Flashing Lights Newsletter

The St John NT Monthly Newsletter

Flashing Lights Newsletter | St John Ambulance
2019 Dec

Message from the CEO

Welcome all to our December Flashing Lights newsletter

As I am sure many of us are thinking – where did this year go?

Just days out from Christmas and the New Year it is good to look back at our achievements for the year. 

Recently I have welcomed our new Director Ambulance Services, Andrew Thomas on board. Andrew was most recently the Operations Manager, Limestone Coast for SA Ambulance Service. His extensive experience will be an asset to the team and enable us to continue to deliver a very high standard of emergency, non-emergency and support services to the people of the Northern Territory.

Alongside Andrew’s appointment we have also welcomed Andrew Everingham into the role of Northern Regional Manager and Paul Bellman Southern Regional Manager in Ambulance Services. Both bring with them a wealth of experience and knowledge in service delivery and will provide excellent leadership to our paramedics.

Just weeks ago we were reminded of the importance of a rapid response and first aid training in saving lives when a gentleman at the Darwin Waterfront precinct experienced cardiac arrest. Luckily there were a number of off duty nurses nearby who quickly initiated CPR and the Wavepool lifeguards used a defibrillator as our paramedics arrived. While all of these people were professionally trained in saving lives, we can all learn first aid. Not only will first aid training provide you with the confidence to respond in an emergency it also helps when giving information to Triple Zero (000) so that we can make sure people get the best treatment as soon as possible. 

I understand that the gentleman is now recovering, we wish him well and are grateful for the fast actions of those around him, as we know for every minute that a person is left without treatment their chances of survival can reduce by 10 per cent.

On behalf of our staff, paramedics and volunteers may I wish everyone a happy and safe Christmas and I look forward to seeing you in the New Year.

Judith Barker, CEO St John NT


Excellence and compassion recognised at annual awards

Congratulations to the 2019 recipients of the Rotary Club of Darwin Sunrise Paramedic of the Year and the St John Ambulance Australia (NT) Excellence Awards which were announced at Parliament House on 28 November.

These awards celebrate and recognise the paramedics, staff and volunteers of St John Ambulance Australia (NT) (St John NT) who demonstrate excellence in leadership or clinical practice, an outstanding level of care, professionalism and compassion for members of the Northern Territory community.

2019 Paramedic of the Year was awarded to 25 year old, Aaron Reynolds.

Aaron joined St John NT in 2017 after completing his Batchelor of Paramedicine through the University of Tasmania and has worked in both Katherine and Darwin, where he has built strong professional relationships and links with the community.

Aaron is a compassionate and highly empathic prehospital clinician, who is well regarded by his peers and dedicated to his profession and the community and joins an alumni of recipients who have provided significant and valuable service to our community.

The complete list of award recipients and photos of the event are available here.



Volunteers take on PTO roles

Last month we were pleased to welcome three new Patient Transport Officers to the team; Jeff, Vincent and Tyrone. While this role is new to each of them, helping our community and being involved in First Aid is not, as each of them are also active volunteers.

Jeff has a long and proud history with St John Ambulance Australia and is a Member of the Order of St John. In 2017 Jeff, a member of Humpty Doo Combined Division, received his nine year service bar. He is an Advanced Responder and regularly attends public events in support of his community. Across 2018/2019 Jeff completed over 500 hours of public service.

Vincent is an Administration Officer with the Palmerston Adult Division. He joined St John NT in March 2018 and has worked hard to rapidly progress his clinical level from First Aider to senior Advanced responder over the course of a year and a half. Vincent regularly attends public events across the Palmerston/ Darwin region and has committed over 800 hours of volunteerism across 2018/19. In 2019 Vincent attended the Variety Bash as a volunteer First Responder to support participants and spectators across this fantastic event. 

Tyrone joined St John NT in October 2017, and is a member of Palmerston Adult Division. Tyrone has a history of medical training with the Australian Armed Forces which he was able to bring to volunteering. Tyrone became an Advanced Responder in 2018, and regularly attends public duties across the NT, completing over 600 hours in 2018/19 season including notable events ‘Australian Super Bikes’ and the 2019 Royal Show Circuit. 

Did you know that in 2018/19 our volunteers provided:

  • 36,276 volunteer hours
  • Attended 887 events
  • Assisted 1,642 people



St John NT recognised for saving NZ soldier

Representatives of the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) visited our Casuarina Station in November to show their appreciation for our role in saving the life of a young NZ serviceman who was found unconscious in the Robertson Barracks Swimming Pool.

The serviceperson was extracted from the pool, Triple Zero (000) was called  and the NZ contingent doctor assisted our ambulance crew at the site and on the way to the Royal Darwin Hospital.

Major Paul Cocker, New Zealand Army said that they were extremely grateful for the first responders in this incident. 

“Due to the high standard of care provided by the paramedics, doctor and hospital staff the serviceperson has subsequently made a full recovery. 

“The hospital staff praised the standard of care delivered by the NZ/AS medical team, and credit the serviceperson’s quick recovery to the fast and professional response provided by the ambulance crew and doctor.

“The NZDF wish to recognise the St John Ambulance crew for assisting in saving the serviceperson’s life and the standard of care that they delivered.”



Taking care of your mental health

Did you know that almost half the total population (45.5%) will experience a mental health disorder at some point in their lifetime.

St John NT is now delivering a suite of accredited and non-accredited Mental Health courses and workshops to provide you with the skills and knowledge required to recognise situations where people may be in imminent crisis.

All courses are delivered by highly experienced professionals who will help participants develop effective strategies to assist others who may be developing or are suffering from a mental health crisis. 

Participants learn how to work collaboratively, minimise safety concerns and access support services until appropriate professional help is available or the crisis resolves.

For more information click here or call on 1300 ST JOHN.



Are they Triple OK?

St John NT was proud to participate in a recent campaign aimed at encouraging stronger peer and social support for police and emergency services workers across Australia.

The campaign was developed in response to research by Beyond Blue which found that police and emergency service personnel report suicidal thoughts more than twice as often as adults in the general population. However, personnel with higher levels of social support and resilience reported lower levels of suicidal thoughts and behaviours.

‘Are they Triple OK?’ will provide free digital and printable resources including a conversation guide on how to ask the question and navigate the conversation if the answer is, “No, I’m not OK”. The resources are designed to foster a supportive work culture and address the high rates of self-stigma identified within the services.

Resources are now available on the R U OK? website at www.ruok.org.au and will be regularly refreshed to address feedback and promote long term behavioral change.



Introducing our newest Paramedics

Congratulations to the newest members of our crew, five new staff who recently completed their Intern Paramedic program.

Their advancement follows formal university qualifications and a year of training with St John NT as interns. They each now have clinical credentialing at paramedic level. 

Welcome to the team: 

  • Matt Lugg - Darwin
  • Georgia Thompson - Darwin
  • Renee Barwick - Katherine
  • Georgia Dempsey - Alice Springs
  • Eli Cox - Alice Springs



Give a gift that saves lives

Stuck for interesting Christmas gift ideas?

St John NT’s retail outlets in Alice Springs and Winnellie have a range of items that would make a great Christmas gift.

Be that an emergency first aid kit or a voucher to one of our training courses, these gifts could provide valuable support when family or friends need it most.

As a not-for-profit organisation, the proceeds from First Aid Training and the sale of First Aid equipment and kits is used to support our volunteers and their activities in the community.




Holiday trading

Please note that St John NT retail outlets, restocking services and First Aid Training Department will be closed from 12pm on Tuesday, 24 December until Thursday, 2 January 2020.

Our offices at 50 Dripstone Road, Casuarina will be closed on the public holidays only.

Our paramedic and emergency services continue serving the community on our regular shifts throughout the holiday period. We would like to thank you for your support throughout 2019 and from all of us at St John NT wish you a safe and happy festive season!


Photo of the Month

Life-saving AED to be installed at Darwin Waterfront
The AED will be installed just weeks after a member of the public, Mr Peter Brady experienced a cardiac arrest in the Waterfront precinct.
Thanks to the quick thinking efforts of several off duty nurses and the Waterfront life guards who used CPR and a defibrillator to revive him, Mr Brady is now on the road to recovery. Click here to read the full media release.

Support St John NT's
Public Access Defibrillator Program or
register your existing AED today.

Upcoming first aid courses

HLTAID003 Provide first aid
(1 Day)

11 Jan in Darwin
17 Jan in Alice Springs

Course Information Book this course

HLTAID003 Provide first aid
(2 Day)

7 & 8, 8 & 9, 14 & 15 Jan in Darwin
30 & 31 Jan in Alice Springs

Course Information Book this course

HLTAID001 Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation
16 Jan in Alice Springs
24 Jan in Katherine

Course Information Book this course

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