There is a considerable waiting list of Ambos (members of Ambulance Victoria) who want to be posted to work in Daylesford.

Currently 20 full-time paramedics are based at Daylesford.  Daylesford’s ambulance Team Manager, Kaden Hutching, says they want to work here because it’s a busy, professionally rewarding station, because Daylesford is a beautiful region to live and work, and most importantly, it’s a great community to work with.

Who are they?  The current team have a cross-section of experience from one month to 15 years.  Like all Ambulance Victoria paramedics, they have all graduated from a four-year training program – a three-year tertiary degree followed by one year ‘on-the-job’.  A number of them are qualified paramedic educators while some have achieved clinical instructor status.  Some live in Daylesford, while others commute from Melbourne and other regional centres.

Support.  The Daylesford Unit also has oversight of a number of First Responders who support emergency medical response.  A team of 12 Ambulance Community Officers (ACOs) are based in Daylesford, and a 6-person Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) is based in Trentham.  They all provide timely response to medical emergencies through early life saving intervention and care of patients as well as participating in community engagement.

Operations.  The Daylesford Ambos provide a 24/7 service.  They respond to about 150 call-outs a month.  They have two ambulance vehicles and a four-wheel drive and respond regularly to injuries from falls, to cardiac arrests and to motor vehicle crashes.  Patients are transported to the Daylesford Hospital or to Ballarat, depending on the severity and urgency.  Because Victoria has a centralised Trauma Plan, serious trauma patients are taken to meet the medical helicopter to be whisked away to one of the trauma specialist hospitals in Melbourne.  One of their challenges lies in the fact that they are often not able to respond as quickly as they’d like, because their resources are tied up responding to non-urgent medical events.  They urge people not to call 000 for non-urgent episodes.  Rather, access the on-line services such as Nurse-on-Call (1300 60 60 24 ) or Hello-Home-Doctor (134 100).

Multi-agency.  Our Ambos work closely and often with the other emergency services in the area.  Close liaison with the fire agencies is practiced often, given that we live in one of the highest bushfire areas in the country and vulnerable infrastructure like aged-care facilities requires careful consideration of evacuation plans if they might be required.  Similarly, incidents involving old mine-shafts, forest trails and waterways require close cooperation with rescue agencies such as the SES.

What they do.  Being a paramedic in Daylesford is about a lot more than lights and sirens and rushing to help people in need.  Daylesford’s highly skilled and educated paramedics and their support personnel perform clinical procedures, administer drugs, maintain patient records and decide the most appropriate care for each patient they attend.

They help the people of the Daylesford and surrounding area at a time of need, and they take great pride that they make a difference to the life and health outcomes of our community.


Related Stories:

Catastrophic Fire in Hepburn and Daylesford – But Only a Simulation

Daylesford’s State Emergency Service (SES)

This is the third in a series of articles we plan to publish to highlight the organisations that protect our communities from disasters.