Next Generation Ambulance Response Vehicle Tue 25 September 2012 Michelle O'Byrne Minister for Health Download hi-res version Ambulance Tasmania is trialling a next generation response vehicle that aims to get help to patients faster, Minister for Health Michelle O'Byrne said today. Ms O'Byrne said the new Paramedic First Intervention Vehicle will save critical minutes for patients and signalled a new generation of critical care response in the State. To be trialled in Hobart over the next six months, the sedan will be manned by a single paramedic moving to be close to areas of high demand rather than waiting at a base. "The sedan has been transformed into a specially equipped and marked ambulance vehicle, complete with sirens and lights, that is not station based," Ms O'Byrne said. "Instead, it will be patrolling different areas of the greater Hobart area shown to be experiencing high demand, meaning it is closer to an emergency if required. "The roving vehicle is able to be deployed more quickly than the traditional vans at the station, saving one or two critical minutes for patients." Ms O'Byrne said the vehicle is based on an internationally recognised model for rapidly deploying paramedics to patients in need of emergency medical care. The FIV has been fitted with technology to allow it to monitor all of the cases happening in its area so it can move around without waiting for direction. "In the coming months it will be fitted with the latest satellite tracking technology so it can be immediately identified as the closest vehicle to a medical emergency," Ms O'Byrne said. The trial is being funded by Ambulance Tasmania through its existing resources but is expected to deliver a number of efficiencies. "The vehicle will help reduce the number of second responses to emergencies by the traditional ambulance vehicles meaning those vehicles are freed up back at base. "And because emergencies happen 24 hours a day and can't be predicted, there is also some scope for these vehicles to play a role in ensuring paramedics rostered on for their shifts get meal breaks without interruption." Ms O'Byrne said the vehicles would be trialled in Hobart for six months and evaluated after that time. "This innovative trial is about Ambulance Tasmania making every effort to use each health dollar as efficiently as possible. "But most importantly it's about finding new ways to respond and deliver timely emergency medical care for its patients." Over the next six months, Southern Tasmanians are being urged to be vigilant for the new vehicles and behave in a similar way to how they would if approached by an ordinary Ambulance Tasmania vehicle - pull to the side when safe to do so and allow it to pass.