Mr RICHARDSON (Mordialloc) — Recently I had the pleasure of joining the Minister for Health, who is also the Minister for Ambulance Services, in my community to recognise the latest ambulance performance data. Our paramedics each and every day put themselves on the line to protect the community. It is a dangerous job. It is a high-demanding job, with hours worked of 14 hours on or 10 hours on. It really pushes our paramedics in our local community. You need a government that supports our paramedics and our health system, and that is exactly what this government is doing with record investments in supporting our paramedics.
Seconds matter when it comes to saving lives. I can say to the house that a 37-second reduction in ambulance response times has been achieved in the City of Kingston, which means people will be safer in our community. At the same time we had some welcome data on elective surgery — and while I say ‘elective surgery’, some of this surgery is for hip replacements and knee replacements for people who have worked all their lives and who have contributed to our community and built up our community and are at a stage in their life where they need that urgent support. I am pleased to advise the house that a 10 000-person reduction in elective surgery waiting times has been achieved in the last four years. That matters to our community and our people. This is vitally important for our region, supporting Sandringham Hospital, Monash hospital and Frankston Hospital, which service our communities. We will continue to invest in health and ambulance services for the betterment of our local area.