Goulburn Valley residents who need an ambulance are being forced to wait at least an hour as Victoria’s Triple-Zero response times become the worst in the nation.
Fewer than two in three (65.6 per cent) emergency calls for an ambulance were answered on time – the lowest level of any state or territory – and worse than 2020-21, where data showed 88.9 per cent of calls were answered on time.
Additionally, ambulance response times have increased by 23.1 per cent across Victoria.
The Nationals Member for Shepparton District, Kim O’Keeffe, said Triple-Zero was now in crisis, with locals’ lives being put at risk.
“People expect that when they call an ambulance in a life-threatening situation, one will arrive on time,” Ms O’Keeffe said.
“But this simply hasn’t been the case.
“I was recently contacted by a resident who was told that an ambulance would be ‘at least an hour’ despite them being severely ill and unable to move.
“Their family was forced to improvise a stretcher out of the house and drive them to Goulburn Valley Health’s Emergency Department, where they were seen to immediately.”
These startling figures are despite Victoria operating the most expensive ambulance service in the nation, spending almost $140 million more than New South Wales in 2021-22.
“Victorians are footing the bill for an inefficient and broken system, and the longer this goes on, the more peoples’ lives are in danger,” Ms O’Keeffe said.
“The Government has failed to understand the serious health system issues plaguing regional Victoria.”