Tuesday, 21 February 2023

Questions without notice and ministers statements

Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority

Georgie CROZIER, Jaclyn SYMES

Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority

Georgie CROZIER (Southern Metropolitan) (12:31): (39) My question is again to the Minister for Emergency Services. Minister, 89-year-old June Moehr of Mansfield fell and broke her left shoulder last December. Her son rang 000. He was told a nurse would contact him later as they were busy. Thirty-five minutes later, with no call from a nurse, he called 000 again. This time he was told an ambulance would be sent when one was available. After an hour and 10 minutes the paramedics arrived, and they provided exceptional care to Mrs Moehr. However, they were very surprised to hear how long Mrs Moehr waited, as they had been at the station for the previous 3 hours. The ambulance station was 5 minutes away. Minister, why did 000 wait so long to send an ambulance when there was one ready to go only 5 minutes away and paramedics were, in their words, available.

Jaclyn SYMES (Northern Victoria – Attorney-General, Minister for Emergency Services) (12:32): I thank Ms Crozier for her question and bringing to the house’s attention the case of Mrs Moehr. I am not aware of the details of that case, but I can certainly follow up if you give me a few more details.

Georgie CROZIER (Southern Metropolitan) (12:33): Thank you very much, Minister, for that response. I am sure that Mrs Moehr and her family would appreciate that, because we know that in other instances that have affected Victorians where an ambulance has not arrived we have not had the response from the government to speak to them. I refer to Mr David Edwards from Swan Hill. You know that case only too well, and sadly, his father died. Minister, my supplementary is now –

Jaclyn Symes interjected.

Georgie CROZIER: No, no. I am just making some commentary around your response, so thank you. My supplementary, Minister, is that Mrs Moehr ended up being in hospital for five weeks. It was clear that she needed urgent medical attention. Minister, when the health system is in crisis and in such disarray, as it is at the current time and has been over the last few years, why are available ambulances and paramedics sitting idly by whilst vulnerable patients languish in pain?

Jaclyn SYMES (Northern Victoria – Attorney-General, Minister for Emergency Services) (12:34): I have committed to following up the case involving Mrs Moehr of Mansfield, but to go on and then use that as a supplementary to say that there are paramedics sitting idle and not responding to –

Georgie Crozier interjected.

Jaclyn SYMES: Generally. I said I would respond to Mrs Moehr, but to use that to then make a broad statement about Victorians not being responded to by our hardworking paramedics is just not an inference you can draw from the one case that I have said I would follow up for you.