A GROUP of newly graduated paramedics will be based in the Grampians and Loddon Mallee regions.
Twelve paramedics in the Grampians are now fully qualified and so are 14 in the Loddon Mallee.
The graduates are part of the Rural Sponsored Degree Program.
Minister for Health David Davis said deployment of the newest group of paramedics would help the existing workforce in towns and suburbs across the state, and recognised the importance of having people on the ground delivering services to communities.
“These newly graduated paramedics will give the existing workforce urgently needed support, so paramedics can continue to provide exceptional pre-hospital care,” he said.
“Among those graduating are 30 paramedics who have sought advancement of their existing qualifications – with seven flying high as either an Advanced Life Support flight paramedic or MICA Flight paramedic, and a record 23 achieving their MICA qualification.
“Regional Victoria benefits even further with this graduation because this is the first group of ‘home-grown’ paramedics graduating from the Rural Sponsored Degree Program.
“This program is one way to help boost paramedic numbers in regional areas.”
Mr Davis said all Victorians were benefiting from a $151-million statewide plan, which was providing hundreds of new ambulance officers across regional and metropolitan Victoria and giving an urgently needed boost to Ambulance Victoria.
“This is the biggest single increase in additional staffing for the ambulance service in the state’s history and Ambulance Victoria is working hard to allocate new paramedics to areas of the state with the greatest need,” he said.
“The State Government has recruited 465 additional paramedics since coming to office.”
Mr Davis said the State Government’s investment included 10 new MICA single responder units, including one in Horsham.
“These specialised MICA teams are now on the road, responding to critical life-threatening emergencies,” he said.