Plans are underway for a new St John facility in New Plymouth to be a hub for both ambulances and the community.

The current ambulance station, located within the Taranaki District Health Board grounds, was built over 30 years ago and is no longer able to meet the growing needs of the New Plymouth community.

The new facility, to be built on Oropuriri Rd, will support not only New Plymouth but the greater Taranaki region including Stratford, Opunake and Hawera.

Emergency ambulances and patient transfer vehicles will be housed and respond from the new station, but the complex will also be used for the wider community.

St John Area Committee Chairman Corie Haddock says the facility will be a base for medical alarms, first aid training and administrative support as well as St John Community Services which are run primarily by volunteers.

“Our dedicated team of volunteers operate many St John services such as Caring Caller, Friends of the Emergency Department, Health Shuttle and St John Youth.”

“We are strengthening our existing community programmes to build more resilient, connected communities and this facility will provide a space for these programmes to grow.”

St John Territory Manager Roger Blume welcomes the new building which will include a purpose-built station to accommodate emergency vehicles and provide a safe working environment for staff.

The New Plymouth ambulances respond to over 6,000 incidents each year, and in addition to the 22 full time ambulance officers that work out of New Plymouth, the station also serves as a hub for ambulances from outlying areas transitioning through the station.

“The emergency service has outgrown the old building, and the new station will allow more functionality, including a space for clinical training and suitable rest areas for staff”, says Mr Blume.

The existing site will be used by the Taranaki District health Board for future development of the hospital.

You can help St John raise the $3.5 million needed for the build by making a cash donation, providing a gift in kind or hosting a fundraising event. Contact Vicky Ingles on 021 633194 for more information.

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