Emergency patients will benefit from a boost in intensive care paramedics, upgrades to lifesaving equipment, including aircraft, and a new state operations centre at Sydney Olympic Park as part of $1.4 billion for NSW Ambulance in the 2021-22 NSW Budget.
Treasurer Dominic Perrottet and Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the record investment in services and capital works will future-proof emergency care across the state and boost capacity in regional and rural areas.
“The NSW Government continues its record investment in both the NSW Ambulance infrastructure and workforce to ensure our paramedics have the very best equipment and support to deliver life-saving emergency care,” Mr Perrottet said.
“Relocating to modern headquarters at Sydney Olympic Park will vastly improve the working environment for NSW Ambulance paramedics and Triple Zero (000) call takers, who manage more than 1.2 million calls a year.”
Mr Hazzard said the funding would also pay for new aeromedical aircraft to improve transport times for remote patients as well as enable 246 paramedics to convert to Intensive Care Paramedics, with more than two-thirds to be based in regional areas.
“The NSW Government is committed to continually improving patient outcomes, particularly in regional and remote areas, by investing in new equipment and strengthening the workforce with specialised paramedics,” Mr Hazzard said.
The 2021-22 budget includes over $214 million for the following key initiatives:
- $126 million over four years to establish a new fit-for-purpose NSW Ambulance state operations centre at Sydney Olympic Park, which will also house the Triple Zero (000) call centre;
- $54.3 million over four years to include jet aircraft for the first time within the fleet to move critical patients between remote areas and tertiary hospitals;
- $34 million over four years to convert 246 paramedics to Intensive Care Paramedics, of which 203 will be in regional areas. ICPs are trained in the use of specific equipment carried in the intensive care vehicles which allow for time-critical patient care;
- Equipping NSW Ambulance with 1,291 new, state-of-the-art monitor/defibrillator units and another 146 at regional hospitals in 2021-22. These systems will enable paramedics to more effectively monitor changes in patients and send real-time information ahead of arrival to hospital.
The move to a State Operations Centre allows for critical emergency operations facilities located in Eveleigh, including the Sydney Control Centre, Aeromedical Control Centre and Incident Management Team, to be consolidated into a central location along with other operational units. The current facilities at Eveleigh will be used as a Disaster Recovery site improving the resiliency of the NSW Ambulance Triple Zero (000) network.
The Rural Ambulance Infrastructure Reconfiguration (RAIR) program is the single largest investment in regional NSW Ambulance’s 126-year history, with 23 new or upgraded ambulance stations already delivered in rural and regional NSW and another 30 underway in 2021-22 as part of the $232 million program.