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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 10 Hansard (Thursday, 20 September 2018) . . Page.. 3932 ..


On average, one ACT resident per day calls for an ambulance with a suspected cardiac arrest. Recognition is the first step to saving a life, and emergency triple zero call takers play an important role in the early recognition of cardiac arrest. This is followed by early hands-on CPR, and CPR coaching is provided by all call takers whilst the ambulance is on the way.

Survival from out of hospital cardiac arrest is typically quite low, historically around 10 per cent. An audit of cardiac arrest survival in the ACT was conducted in 2014 and found a survival discharge rate of 18 per cent. An audit was then conducted in 2017 and found that survival to discharge had increased to 31 per cent. This is an outstanding result and ranks amongst the best in the world.

Despite demand on ACTAS being at the highest levels ever, the professionalism of the women and men of ACTAS ensures that we continue to have one of the best ambulance services in the country. I would like to congratulate the hardworking staff at ACTAS and also thank all the personnel and volunteers across the ESA and other front-line services who help keep all of us safe and care for us.

MR PETTERSSON: Minister, what recognition has been given to long-serving volunteers?

MR GENTLEMAN: I was pleased earlier this year to officially recognise the professional services volunteered to the ACT Emergency Services Agency by awarding twelve mapping and planning support volunteers the inaugural ESA long service medal to recognise the skills and service that they have provided to emergency management over the past decade.

MAPS volunteers have provided a total of nearly 750 days of assistance to emergency service agencies across eastern Australia since 2006. MAPS volunteers supported emergency operations during the Black Saturday bushfires in 2009, Cyclone Yasi in 2011 and the Carwoola bushfires in 2017.

Canberra is home to the largest concentration per capita of graphic information system professionals in Australia, and the MAPS program provides a valuable link between emergency managers and volunteer GIS professionals. These volunteers play a vital role in keeping emergency responders and the community safe.

MS CODY: Minister, what update do you have on the award of the ACT emergency service medal?

MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Ms Cody for her interest, too, in our ESA volunteers. On 27 August 2018 at the Australian Border Force swearing-in ceremony I had the pleasure of awarding an ACT emergency medal to Mr Kingsley Woodford-Smith. The ACT emergency medal was instituted in 2004 to recognise the dedication to duty and bravery of emergency services personnel who contributed to the protection of life, property and the environment following the ACT bushfires in January 2003. The actions of Mr Woodford-Smith in January 2003 represented the values that we highly praise within emergency services: courage and selfless service to the ACT community.


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