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Medical Flight Nurses Fear for Their Jobs in New Zealand


New Zealand, like Australia, relies heavily on medical flight services to provide timely medical intervention to the people of their country. The government of New Zealand has been on a task to modernize its medical flight service since the past three years. It is believed that modernization efforts will take about a decade to implement. What has got the nursing fraternity of the country worried is the fact that suggestions are being made to replace medical flight nurses with paramedics. It was the director of St. John, Tony Smith, who had made the subtle suggestion.

What is Tony’s Take on Medical Flight Nurses?

Tony Smith has clearly ruled out the possibility of completely doing away with the services of medical flight nurses. What he has been suggesting is the fact that their services might be of less use when compared to those of paramedics in cases where patients are transported from one hospital to another. It was felt that speed was the critical factor in situations like these and paramedics are specifically trained to act quickly. If the proposal comes into effect, as early as the end of this year, we will see about 50 such paramedics put into action. This has got the medical flight nurses worried.

What the Medical Flight Nurses have to Say

The argument that medical flight nurses place is also fair. They highlighted the fact that speed is not the only criteria and pointed to the fact that nurses are better trained in medicine. They also argued that each situation should be assessed individually before taking such drastic steps. The government, at the current time, is lending a listening ear to the arguments placed before it by the nursing community. It is believed that the next meeting regarding the modernization of the country’s medical flight services will be held sometime in March.

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