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Glenorchy ambulance station joins long list of Liberal failures

The Liberal government’s complete failure to deliver a new ambulance superstation at Glenorchy is yet another broken promise to Tasmanians and a damning indictment of their commitment to better health services.

The Liberals first promised to build the superstation four years, two elections and three Premiers ago – with construction supposed to begin in 2018-19 and the station supposed to be open by last year.

But instead, the development went nowhere under then-Premier Will Hodgman and then his replacement Peter Gutwein.

The new Premier and Health Minister Jeremy Rockliff needs to do far better than his predecessors to support the greater Hobart area and our overworked and stressed paramedics.

The Health and Community Services Union has raised grave concerns about paramedics’ deteriorating mental health and wellbeing, and a ‘resilience scan’ commissioned by Ambulance Tasmania last September found more than a third of the 323 staff who took part suffered from depression, anxiety, stress or post-traumatic stress disorder.

It is no wonder our ambulance response times are the worst in the country – blowing out by 30 per cent since the Liberals came to office – and that communities are being left without emergency services as ambulances are diverted to other centres.

It is clear the Rockliff-Ferguson government needs to do much more to support our under-resourced and short-staffed paramedics, particularly with COVID adding to the pressures on hospitals and other health services.

If they want to be a government that delivers, they need to finally deliver on their promises to Tasmanians. The Glenorchy ambulance superstation would be a good start.

Anita Dow MP
Shadow Health Minister