Gladstone's paramedics forced to choose who to save first

IF you're in a life threatening situation, that is when you call an ambulance. Not for a splinter in the finger.

Queensland Ambulance Services Rockhampton operation centre manager Mindy Thomas said situations that could be dealt with by a local GP or pharmacist were ones that did not need an ambulance call.

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"If we turn up to the hospital with someone on a stretcher with a splinter in their finger and someone is in emergency with chest pain, then that takes priority," she said.

"We have a medical priority dispatch system so cases including chest pain, breathing difficulties or uncontrolled bleeding get the highest response because they are life threatening."

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EMERGENCY? If you've got a splinter in your finger, spare a though for someone with chest pains.
EMERGENCY? If you've got a splinter in your finger, spare a though for someone with chest pains. Ebony Battersby

Receiving on average 155 triple zero calls daily, Ms Thomas said about 50% were life threatening.

Ms Thomas said people concerned about a medical issue could call 13HEALTH to speak to a doctor.

"I'm not saying don't call triple zero ... if it is severely life threatening do not hesitate to call," she said.



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