Home Australia Covid-19 Australia: Victoria’s hospitals enlist help of military as triage tents raised #englishheadline #Covid19 #Australia #Victorias #hospitals #enlist #military #triage #tents #raised

Covid-19 Australia: Victoria’s hospitals enlist help of military as triage tents raised #englishheadline #Covid19 #Australia #Victorias #hospitals #enlist #military #triage #tents #raised

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Victoria’s ambulances will be driven by military personnel with triage tents set up outside hospitals as the health system struggles to cope with the Covid-19 outbreak.

Paramedics normally working in teams of two will now be split up in a bid to improve response times. It marks the first time such a drastic measure has been taken.

Each paramedic will be accompanied by a driver from the ADF, St John Ambulance Australia, State Emergency Service or student paramedics.

Some patients will be treated by nurses as they wait in ambulances while others will be treated in triage tents set up outside the hospitals. 

The extraordinary measures come as a top health expert warns the state is in a ‘medical emergency’ with wait times in ambulances reaching up to two hours and sick patients told to drive themselves to hospital if possible. 

Despite record Covid case numbers in Victoria, the number of people in hospital with the illness is still lower than it was during the 2020 winter. 

The percentage of Covid cases requiring hospital admission is also falling, standing at 3.35 per cent on Friday, compared to 6.25 per cent a month ago

Victoria’s ambulances will be driven by military personnel and triage tents set up outside hospitals as the health system struggles to cope with the Covid-19 outbreak

Some patients will be treated by nurses as they wait in ambulances while others will be treated in triage tents set up outside the hospitals

Some patients will be treated by nurses as they wait in ambulances while others will be treated in triage tents set up outside the hospitals

Two people suffering from cardiac arrest have also died after their Triple-0 calls went unanswered for five minutes because of an overstrained emergency service line.

Australian Medical Association Victorian president Roderick McRae said the state was gripped in a ‘crisis’.

‘I think Victorians are going to be really shocked by just how much pressure our health system will be under in the coming weeks,’ he told The Age.

‘Nobody seems to want to say this is a crisis. The Victorian government still hasn’t declared a statewide disaster, which I think is needed so people realise just how tough the circumstances are.’

Ambulance Victoria has reported four of its five busiest days in history over the last two weeks.

Some ambulance patients are waiting up to 10 hours to receive emergency care.

Patients are also waiting an average of 50 minutes to be transferred from their stretcher and onto a hospital bed.

The wait time is a 20 minute increase compared to pre-pandemic levels in 2019. 

Ambulance Victoria executive director of clinical operations Mick Stephenson said it was necessary ADF personnel were deployed to help struggling healthcare workers. 

‘It’s something we would have liked not to have done, but that is the state of the nation, we’re in such dire circumstances we have to do it,’ he said.

Anonymous health sources claim that intensive care units are at capacity with a surge in Covid-19 patients drastically driving up figures.

There are currently 560 Covid-19 patients being treated in hospital, of which 115 are in ICU and 74 require ventilators.

The extraordinary measures come as a top health expert warns the state is in a 'medical emergency' with wait times in ambulances reaching up to two hours and sick patients told to drive themselves to hospital (pictured, ambulances queued outside a Melbourne hospital)

The extraordinary measures come as a top health expert warns the state is in a ‘medical emergency’ with wait times in ambulances reaching up to two hours and sick patients told to drive themselves to hospital (pictured, ambulances queued outside a Melbourne hospital)

Ambulance Victoria metro regional director Jerome Peyton said he saw as many as 17 ambulances waiting outside one hospital

Ambulance Victoria metro regional director Jerome Peyton said he saw as many as 17 ambulances waiting outside one hospital

The number of patients in hospital is a 40 per cent jump of patients that were being treated by nurses last week. 

Ambulance Victoria metro regional director Jerome Peyton said he saw as many as 17 ambulances waiting outside one hospital.

He remained optimistic splitting up the paramedics would not impact the level of care provided to patients when they were called out.

‘Look, I was out last night with one of our other managers within Ambulance Victoria,’ he told Channel Nine’s Today Show on Friday.

‘I saw some fantastic work that the paramedics are doing out there. I visited many hospitals around Melbourne.’

Daily calls to Triple-0 have also increased by a third with 3,000 people calling the emergency line compared to 2,200 last October.

The spike ultimately led to two people dying from cardiac arrest after their calls went unanswered for five minutes.

Other callers have been forced to wait longer with one person waiting on the line for 33 minutes and another for 14 minutes. 

There are currently 560 Covid-19 patients being treated in hospital, of which 115 are in ICU and 74 require ventilators

There are currently 560 Covid-19 patients being treated in hospital, of which 115 are in ICU and 74 require ventilators

Daily calls to Triple-0 have also increased by a third with 3,000 people calling the emergency line compared to 2,200 last October (pictured, ambulances queued outside a hospital in Melbourne)

Daily calls to Triple-0 have also increased by a third with 3,000 people calling the emergency line compared to 2,200 last October (pictured, ambulances queued outside a hospital in Melbourne)

ESTA chief executive Marty Smyth admitted there had been delays in answering calls. 

He directed part of the blame on callers who did not require immediate medical attention.

‘On Wednesday we experienced unanticipated spikes in calls into ESTA and unfortunately about 38 per cent of the calls did not actually need an ambulance,’ he told Herald Sun

‘Our hardworking call-takers did their absolute best to respond to calls as quickly as possible.’ 

Mr Payton urged callers to first seek advice from their GP if their symptoms were not severe.

‘We want people to be really mindful about when they’re calling 000 and really save it for those emergency cases,’ he said.

‘If there is a case that comes in that is not necessarily emergency that could be sent through to our referral service to be better managed in other ways.

‘But I also encourage people to think about how they’re calling 000 and maybe speak to their pharmacist or GP, or nurse in their pharmacist or GP, or nurse in the first instance, to better manage the whole health system as an entity.’

The number of patients in hospital is a 40 per cent jump of patients that were being treated by nurses last week

The number of patients in hospital is a 40 per cent jump of patients that were being treated by nurses last week



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#Covid19 #Australia #Victorias #hospitals #enlist #military #triage #tents #raised

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