Health Minister Roger Cook today officially launched Western Australia's first long-term strategy to strengthen country ambulance services across the State.
Undertaking a review of country ambulance services was a Labor election commitment.
It will safeguard the future of this essential health service and ensure it is safe, equitable and sustainable.
The Country Ambulance Strategy - Striving for Equity in Country WAis the result of the most extensive community consultation ever undertaken in relation to state ambulance services.
A three-month public consultation phase and 120 community workshops saw almost 1000 submissions received from the thousands of community members, health providers and stakeholders.
These submissions have been used to inform the final strategy, the first of its kind ever produced in WA.
The Country Ambulance Strategy - Striving for Equity in Country WAsets out 19 recommendations including:
Measures to attract and support ambulance volunteers, including more training and administrative support;
Greater investment in community paramedics;
Improving coordination between hospitals and ambulance services; and
Adopting new technologies to improve communication to and from every ambulance on the road in country WA.
"I am very proud to be able to announce this 'first' for WA country residents - the first long-term plan to safeguard the future of the WA country ambulance services," Mr Cook said.
"The Country Ambulance Strategy - Striving for Equity in Country WAis a reflection of country residents' commitment to their ambulance service.
"I would like to thank St John Ambulance for their ongoing commitment to country ambulance services and look forward to working collaboratively with them to deliver this State first strategy.
"We are doing what has not been done before, so that country residents, volunteers and the wider community can continue to be assured of the best possible country ambulance service into the future.
"I extend my appreciation to every volunteer ambulance worker, organisations large and small and local community members who took the time to be part of a workshop, make a phone call, send an email or make a formal submission."