New funding means more ambulance staff hired

About 100 extra paramedics have been hired under new funding, Health Minister Tony Ryall says.

The funding was part of the Government's $48 million four-year spend to support national ambulance services.

"We now have in place extra paramedics in more than 40 centres throughout New Zealand, particularly in many smaller towns.

"Otaki has three new paramedics, and as a result, the number of incidents that two officers attend has doubled from 44 percent to 88 percent," he said.

"Otorohanga and Te Kuiti each have two extra paramedics, which means an ambulance officer will be on duty in the town seven days a week, with one on duty every night supported by another on call."

Also new paramedics at Kaitaia, Dargaville, Kaikohe, Waihi, Paeroa and Thames would ensure continuous cover.

Wellington's reliance on volunteer staff to fully crew ambulances has reduced, and the average number of ambulances available both day and night has increased.

"This means a much better ambulance service for many thousands New Zealanders, up and down the country," Mr Ryall said.


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