Waimate ambulance service in jeopardy
The existing St John Waimate ambulance service is under review, as are other stations due to the Double Crewing project, raising concerns that the district will not receive the level of service it currently has.
Mayor Craig Rowley is calling on St John to support its existing full-time ambulance officer by recruiting a second paid officer, arguing that the hours currently being worked are excessive and untenable.
“The local St John Area Committee, along with the local ambulance team, have recognised the need to do something about this so they have raised local funds to pay for a second full-time ambulance officer,” says Mayor Rowley. “When the idea was discussed with St John management, the request was turned down.”
“This is very disappointing. The heavy workload is a big ask for the one full-time ambulance officer and the Area Committee has come up with a sustainable solution but it has been rejected.”
“Furthermore, the money raised has come from the local community and, quite rightly, they expect it to be spent locally. Not only has this request being denied, but we have been informed that our existing full-time officer may be relocated. This is not an option that we see as having any merit, and in fact I feel would be even more detrimental to the health and safety of residents throughout the Waimate District.”
“We’d like to see St John reverse its decision by allowing a second full-time ambulance officer join the team in Waimate and ensure that both ambulance officers remain based in Waimate.”
A similar letter expressing the concerns has also been sent to local MP for Waitaki, the Hon Jacqui Dean.