Funding announcement

Funding announced for ambulance service 'falls short', says Wellington Free

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Wellington Free Ambulance Chief Executive Diana Crossan welcomes Government’s move to address the issue of single crewing for St John, but says it falls well short of what’s needed to keep the wider ambulance sector afloat.

“We know how important it is to double crew. It’s something Wellington Free Ambulance has been doing for years, so receiving the news of more funding for double crewing will come as a welcome relief for St John.”

“The issue for us is that ambulance services are only funded to around 75 percent of what it costs to run the service and today’s announcement doesn’t change that,” Diana Crossan says.

“The New Zealand Fire Service is fully funded. The New Zealand Police force is fully funded. Why is it that emergency ambulance services have to go cap in hand to their community to pay for life saving equipment?”

“It’s mad to think that the only reason we can keep going is because of the support we have from the people in our community.

“Our loyal supporters in our communities are the ones digging deep to make up the $4.2 million shortfall Wellington Free has to find every year.

“Without them we wouldn’t be able to continue to operate,” Diana Crossan says.

Wellington Free Ambulance is the only emergency ambulance service in Greater Wellington and Wairarapa. They work closely with other health and emergency services to provide world class paramedic care.

The service operates a fully double crewed model, and each year they respond to 48,000 incidents and answer 101,000 calls for help.

Wellington Free Ambulance is uniquely free to patients.

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