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Coronial Findings Demand Urgent Action on Paramedic Mental Health

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Wednesday, 5 July 2023

Tags: Health, Mental Health, Paramedics, Ambulances

Cassy O'Connor MP | Greens Leader

The Coroner has effectively put the Rockliff Government on notice over the mental health of paramedics.

The Rockliff Government needs to commit to introducing regular a psychological assessment system for Ambulance Tasmania employees immediately, as recommended by Coroner Olivia McTaggart today.

Paramedics’ life-saving work, should not come at the cost of their own – nor their wellbeing. 
Coroner McTaggart’s in-depth Inquiry into the tragic death of paramedic Damian Crump made thirteen strong recommendations that demand action.

The Greens welcome Ambulance Tasmania’s progress on many of the issues raised during the inquest, however, today’s findings highlight the need for a greater government focus on paramedic welfare.

It's good to see improvement in paramedic support, but further reform is needed. Most critical is introducing regular psychological assessments to identify and respond to mental health issues quickly – a policy the Greens have long been calling for.
The stressful, and often traumatic, nature of paramedics’ work puts their mental health at risk daily. The Rockliff Government has a duty of care, and it should be doing all it can to support the people who are there when Tasmanians are in desperate need of help
Regular psychological assessments will help people before they reach a crisis point. They will create cultural change around accessing support. For those on the frontline this reform is crucial for their wellbeing – and could be life-saving.
The Greens have been strong advocates for regular paramedic mental health support, and took the policy to the 2021 State Election*. Regrettably, we are yet to see the government act. We trust today’s recommendations from the Coroner will drive real change and save lives.

*’Paramedic Mental Health’ in the Health and Wellbeing policy"