October 16, 2019
In 1991, there were just 1100 front-line ambulance staff in Queensland; in 2019 there are 4707.
These paramedics respond to 1.3 million calls and travel a total of 42 million kilometres every year.
These were some of the statistics shared by Kingaroy Local Ambulance Committee (LAC) president John Box at Monday night’s Kingaroy Rotary Club meeting.
John, who represented the area at the recent LAC State Conference in Toowoomba, was invited to be the guest speaker at the meeting.
The topic of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) was a focus of John’s talk.
Kingaroy Rotary has funded the installation of 18 AEDs across the region, which John said was greeted with a big round of applause at the LAC conference.
John said the QAS’s State Operations centres were in the process of creating a central register of AED locations so Triple Zero callers can be directed to the nearest device in an emergency.
However, the LACs were also pushing for members of the public to do free CPR Awareness courses as effective CPR was still the best first aid response.
Across Queensland, more than 28,600 community members undertook the LAC-CPR Awareness program in 2018-19.
“QAS paramedics have to use effective CPR for six minutes before they can use defibrillators or medical interventions,” John said.
He said CPR Awareness courses could be organised via the Kingaroy Ambulance Station.
John also told the Rotarians that celebrations would be held on February 29 next year to mark 100 years of ambulance service in Kingaroy.
Wednesday was QAS “Restart A Heart” day.
QAS Medical Director Dr Stephen Rashford said paramedics around the State were promoting three simple steps to help in an emergency: Call, Push, Shock.
“Firstly, call Triple Zero as fast as possible and get help on the way, secondly push hard and fast in the centre of the chest which will ensure blood will continue to flow until first responders arrive,” Dr Rashford said.
“Thirdly is to shock, if there is an AED available please apply it, it’s very easy to do and it will talk you through it. You may in fact save someone’s life.”
The Rotary Club of Kingaroy meets every Monday evening at the South Burnett Respite centre at SBcare in Avoca Street.
For more information about Kingaroy Rotary, phone 0497-359-351.