The following media releases have been issued by Paramedical Services Australia

18 August 2019

Clinical Panel (2019 - 2020) Announced
Each year the clinical panel is reviewed and continued, stood down or amended as required. For 2018 - 2019 the clinical panel was the following
Medical Officer (Qld) - Dr Stephen Yelland [Medical Practitioner - Specialist]
Medical Officer (NSW) - Vacant

Clinical Director - Mr Daniel Patterson [Advanced Care Paramedic]

Paramedic Advisor - Mr Wade Gilroy [Intensive Care Paramedic]

General Members - Ms Heather Stewart [Advanced Care Paramedic], Mr Christopher McCullough [Advanced Care Paramedic]

The 2019 - 2020 clinical panel is

Medical Officer (Qld) - Dr Stephen Yelland [Medical Practitioner - Specialist]

Medical Officer (NSW) - Dr Marian Evans [Medical Practitioner - Specialist]
Clinical Director - Mr Daniel Patterson [Ambulance Officer (ALS-E)]

Paramedic Advisor - Mr Christopher McCullough [Ambulance Officer (ALS)]

Nurse - Ms Tracey Ditchburn [Registered Nurse/Paramedic]

General Members - Mr Blake Skene [First Responder], Mr Matthew Dybing [Ambulance Officer (BLS)]

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5 August 2019

Don't tell us your event has been canceled? You may still have to pay.

A team was sent from the Gold Coast to Grafton, NSW on 3 August 2019 to provide medical coverage at an event. Due to the community interest of the event a $400 discount was given - effectively wages and fuel would be covered.

Upon arriving at Grafton, our team found an empty park and no locals knew of an event. As it transpired, the event had been cancelled weeks earlier and the organiser had failed to notify us. The organiser requested the invoice be waived. 

 

A 2 page response was provided. In short our decision was:

Invoice INV-0227 for $606.75 is valid and enforceable. Your organisation has until 10 August 2019 to pay the
invoice in accordance with the agreement signed 23 May 2019.

If you believe an error has been made on our part, you are invited to demonstrate how this error has been
made before the due date of the invoice. At that time, enforcement action will be postponed to consider any
evidence raised.

 

We cannot waive an invoice when a crew has travelled at least 3 hours south, resources have been wasted and no alternative event or worksite was available.

 

For event organisers, when you cancel your event - remember that you have to notify everyone you booked or you will be invoiced

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27 July 2019

Employee dismissed - Refusal to undergo drug testing
An Advanced Life Support Ambulance Officer has been removed from the Paramedical Services Australia register and has been stood down for a refusal to undergo drug testing earlier this month.

All PSA employees are randomly drug and alcohol tested, refusal to undertake drug/alcohol testing is seen as a high reading and employees are dismissed.

In the interest of public safety and transparency as a public safety organisation, the employee has been stood down. 

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24 July 2019

HCCC Investigation into Paramedical Services Australia employee legally closed

Regarding previous statements put out, most would be aware a member of Paramedical Services Australia was under investigation of the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission between 24 April 2019 and 25 June 2019. The information given to the victim (our member) was that the complainant had 28 days to appeal the decision (decision being that the complaint was false and nothing would happen). Depending on which letter is referred to, this meant the complainant had between until either 21 July 2019 or 23 July 2019 to appeal.

In either case, no appeal has been made so the case is considered closed. A strongly worded letter regarding the lack of professionalism and lack of prosecution (by HCCC) of the complainant was sent by the victim to a Lisa B. (Manager of the HCCC Complaint Assessment Team).

Whilst we would love nothing more than to name and shame a liar and coward the individual is a paramedic with NSW Ambulance and NSW Health are currently investigating the matter. We do not wish to compromise their investigation so will wait for them to conclude their investigation before the individual is named.

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17 July 2019

Suspicious Resume - First Aider - Under investigation
Responding to our post on social media calling for First Aiders to work at an event in New South Wales at 10:17 today, Paramedical Services Australia operations officer received a resume from a Banyo man. This person purported to be trained by the Australian Army, the United Nations and had a background as a Tactical Medic and extensive paramedic/military training.

In reality, the individual has only completed AQF training to the standard of a First Aider (Certificate II level). They are currently a student at the Australian Paramedical College in Gold Coast, Queensland.

Further enquiries revealed this man has never served in the Australian Defence Force or any Australian Police Service as a 'Tactical Medic' or indeed in any capacity.

At 14:16 today the Australian Defence Force has notified PSA they will be looking into the matter.

Our team has a broad range of knowledge and skills from backgrounds such as emergency services (mostly ambulance, 2 from fire, 1 from police) and the Australian Defence Force. If you send us a resume claiming service in an industry, odds are one of our staff has a contact in that sector to verify it.

This should serve as a warning to any person embellishing in your resume. Many companies won't know whether you are lying or not, but eventually you get a company that can see not only the deceit, but how long it has gone on.

 

At this stage, we will not be naming the individual to allow a fair investigation.

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15 July 2019

Investigation formally commenced into NSW Ambulance paramedic for providing false/misleading information to NSW Government and Queensland Government regarding health services provided by PSA. 

At 12:43 today an email was received from R. Ely of NSW Ambulance's Executive and Ministerial Services team.

In June 2019 a formal complaint was lodged with NSW Health Secretary, Elizabeth Koff outlining the concerns of a relatively senior paramedic of the countries largest ambulance service providing (what PSA/Police/ASIC and the HCCC has concluded is) false information to two government agencies for what appeared to be a commercial advantage (given no evidence was given and the applicant was seeking to damage a competing business)

Mr. Ely advised that updates are available from H. Goodwin, Senior Manager Executive & Ministerial Services, NSW Ambulance.

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25 June 2019

HCCC conclude investigation into complaint made on 20 April 2019.​ 

66 Days after the complaint was made, the HCCC have concluded that the complaint was false and, in their own words;

"After conducting a thorough assessment, we found no evidence to substantiate the allegations" (raised by the complainant).

The complainant has 28 days to request a review of their investigation. This means the complainant has until 23 July 2019 to provide evidence of any kind (as no evidence of a health service being provided to them was provided at any point).

The HCCC were extremely evasive and whilst they were willing to provide updates over the phone, they were reluctant to respond to queries made by PSA in writing. This lack of transparency and poor investigation practice is condemnable and would have increased the stress of the PSA employee who, as it turns out, was innocent all along.

We can only hope HCCC will prosecute the complainant in accordance with the Health Care Complaints Act 1993.

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20 June 2019

Investigation into complaint made on 20 April 2019 to HCCC [Police Conclude investigation]​ 

Police at Tweed Byron District have concluded the investigation into the complainants offences. 3 under the Criminal Code Act and 1 under the Health Care Complaints Act. Most likely due to the fact this person is a current NSW Government employee, NSW Police are not willing to arrest and charge the complainant.

It was suggested that the Health Secretary/HCCC are the most appropriate persons to deal with this matter.

They were thanked for their professionalism and advice. 
 

HCCC's investigation/assessment is ongoing.

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9 June 2019

Helping hand to passed out man
Last night one of our teams attended a 26-year-old male in Fortitude Valley. The individual was face down with their phone on speaker to a friend. Allegedly, the person had been on holiday from out west and partied a little too hard in Brisbane. The scene was attended by 4 'beat' officers from Queensland Police who assisted with moving the individual. The person did not need any medical treatment and was transported to a house nearby where he was staying.

PSA would like to remind people, whilst it is ok to go out and party, make sure you go out with friends as this person could easily have become victim of a roberry or serious assault based on where he was, lack of lighting and witnesses.

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20 May 2019

Investigation into complaint made on 20 April 2019 to HCCC [Determination 3]​ 

PSA has reviewed all available evidence from multiple agencies including:
Office of the Health Ombudsman, Health Care Complaints Commission, Australian Securities and Investments Commission, Australian Tax Office, Queensland Government - Department of Justice and Attorney-General and NSW Justice.

It did not appear to us that the complaint was lawful. The complainant is known to reside in Northern NSW and the matter was referred to NSW Police for consideration.

At 10:31 today, a chief inspector, office of the general counsel, NSW Police contacted the affected officer and noted that providing a false complaint to the HCCC was an offence. This matter was referred to Tweed Heads police station by the Chief Inspector.
 

HCCC's investigation/assessment is ongoing.

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17 May 2019

Investigation into complaint made on 20 April 2019 to HCCC [Determination 2]​ 

PSA has checked all body camera's, emails, patient care records, dash camera footage and other records and can find no evidence any health service was provided on 19 April 2019 as alleged by the complainant to the HCCC. As no further details were provided by the complainant, we are reasonably satisfied that no adverse health service was provided by the employee.

HCCC's investigation/assessment is ongoing.

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15 May 2019

Investigation into complaint made on 20 April 2019 to HCCC [Determination 1]​ 

PSA is reasonably satisfied the complainant is a 40-year-old male who is a Director of the ANZCP, Intensive Care Paramedic for NSW Ambulance and Director of a competing commercial paramedic service.

We are reasonably satisfied that the complainant has lied, in writing (documents held by PSA), about:

  1. A health service being provided by PSA on 19 April 2019.

  2. His date of birth.

  3. The aforementioned health service being provided to him on 19 April 2019.

PSA will determine the best course of action. HCCC's investigation/assessment is ongoing.

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13 May 2019

Complaint made about PSA employee to Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC)

At or around 17:00 today a complaint was received by an employee of PSA pertaining to a health service that was allegedly provided on 19 April 2019. The identity of the complainant is not known, the register of patients maintained by PSA shows no entries by any employee on 19 April 2019. 

The employee provided a written response 2 hours after the complaint was received.

 

An investigation has been commenced by PSA to determine 3 things.

  1. The identity of the complainant

  2. If the employee provided a health service on 19 April 2019

  3. If the complaint is lawful

PSA intends to fully co-operate with the HCCC. If you are concerned about a health practitioner or health service, you can contact hccc@hccc.nsw.gov.au

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30 March 2019

Man vandalises ambulance, attempts to assault ambulance officer. - Biggera Waters
On 25 March 2019 a PSA ambulance was static in Biggera Waters, Queensland. A person on a mobility scooter threw an object (later discovered to be a bottle of motor oil) at the ambulance. Suspecting the person may be drunk or mentally impaired the officer activated the body-worn camera and confronted the individual. The individual stated they were unhappy with an ambulance being parked in a certain section of the road as it obstructed them and they had to use the footpath and go around the ambulance.

The individual heavily implied they were a member of the Queensland Ambulance Service. When asked for a name or service number they responded with "fuck you! You wanker!". The person proceeded back in direction of the ambulance and was followed. At some point near the ambulance the person attempted to strike the officer who held them back by grasping their right arm and chest.
Body camera footage was reviewed by PSA. Officer cleared of any wrongdoing or misconduct.

Body camera footage was made available to Queensland Ambulance Service.

Body camera footage was made available to Queensland Police Service.

On 29 March 2019 Queensland Ambulance Service contacted the officer, having reviewed the footage, and said it is very unlikely this person is a current employee of the ambulance service.

The identity of this person is unknown to PSA, Police and Ambulance as far as we are aware.

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24 May 2018

Contract Terminated by PSA - interest of public health and safety.
PSA is well known to provide an ambulance at a private school on the Gold Coast since December 2016.
 

A directive was issued by a Chief Financial Officer at the school to not administer any scheduled substances to students. A scheduled substance is effectively any drug regulated by the Australian Government Department of Health listed under the SUSMP which is updated every 3 months. Scheduled drugs include minor drugs like Panadol and Methoxyflurane, but include life-saving drugs like Adrenaline, Amiodarone, Atropine, Naloxone and many others.

A directive to withhold any scheduled drugs means that PSA would be unable to treat conditions such as Asthma, Anaphylaxis and Cardiac arrest and would have to let the children at the college die. PSA is not in the business of letting persons die of preventable conditions.

Negotiations commenced mid-May 2018 with the school however the Director of PSA and the CFO of the school were unable to come to an agreement. PSA's position was very clear (we will administer drugs if necessary, in accordance with clinical protocols as we have done without incident for the past 18 months). The CFO's position was clear as well, however it is unknown if it was supported by the board of the college or not.

PSA would like to make clear, we do not negotiate on safety and healthcare. If you ask us not to perform the very skills you are contracting us for, we will not comply. That is how paramedics end up in the coroner's court.

 

As such, effective 18:07 tonight, PSA has completed its final shift at the college and will no longer be attending the school. Our staff made friends with the staff at the school and as far as 'on-ground' personnel are going, it is hard to say goodbye to colleagues you have come to know and respect, who treated us as if we were staff instead of contractors. 

It is expected that some invoices may not get paid, staff wages will be paid by PSA regardless.

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