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Becoming a QAS volunteer

The Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) has more than 1600 volunteers providing support to our service in a variety of operational and community roles. 

There are two main groups of QAS volunteers – select your preferred group to find out more information on becoming a QAS volunteer:

See QAS Volunteers for general information about volunteering for QAS.

Local Ambulance Committee and CPR Awareness Program volunteers

By far the largest group of QAS volunteers are LAC volunteers, with approximately 150 active committees boasting more than 1300 volunteers.

LACs are attached to ambulance stations of all sizes and in many locations across Queensland.  LACs provide a direct link between the QAS and the community and exemplify the enduring connection QAS has with the Queensland community.

What do LACs do?

LACs are an important part of our service and they perform a variety of functions, including raising awareness of ambulance services through community engagement activities; and fundraising to enhance QAS services such as funding further education or research opportunities for front-line staff.

LACs are established under the Ambulance Service Act 1991 and are convened under a Constitution.  New LACs can be established in any Queensland community where there is an ambulance station and where there are sufficient volunteers prepared to undertake the work of the LAC (minimum of five (5) volunteers required).

LACs, in partnership with QAS staff, also deliver Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) sessions through the vitally important CPR Awareness Program.

CPR is easy to learn and effective CPR occurring in the first few minutes after a cardiac arrest (known as Bystander CPR) is critical to improving the chances of a patient’s survival.

Who can join a LAC?

The Ambulance Service Act 1991 defines the eligibility requirements for joining a LAC.  Applicants wishing to join a LAC must declare that they are a person who is:

  1. either a permanent resident of Queensland and of the area serviced by the existing or the proposed Local Ambulance Committee or
  2. a permanent resident of Queensland who works in the area serviced by the Local Ambulance committee, and
  3. aged 18 years or older.

Please note some exclusions also apply.  LAC volunteers cannot be:

  • less than 18 years old
  • be employees of the QAS
  • be current members of another LAC
  • be an undischarged bankrupt or a person taking advantage of the current bankruptcy laws to escape bankruptcy
  • at any time convicted of an indictable offence in Queensland or the equivalent of a Queensland indictable offence in another jurisdiction.

This information is included on the LAC Membership Form.

How to join a LAC

You can:

  1. join as a LAC volunteer to contribute to the work of the committee generally, such as undertaking community engagement activities and delivering CPR Awareness sessions, or perhaps get elected to an office-bearer role such as President, Vice-President, Secretary or Treasurer or
  2. join as a LAC volunteer specifically to be trained to deliver vitally important CPR Awareness sessions in your community. 

To find out if there is a LAC in your local area, please check the list of LACs.  This list includes your Local Ambulance Service Network (LASN) office contact telephone number.

Interested?  To learn about community volunteering opportunities in your local area:

  • Telephone your LASN office to be connected with your closest LAC or
  • If there is an ambulance station but no LAC in your local area and you think you can help gather community support to recruit volunteers for a LAC, telephone your LASN office to discuss the possibility of establishing a LAC in your area or
  • Complete the general web enquiries form and your LASN office will contact you about community volunteering opportunities in your local area.  Be sure to include your contact information and the suburb where you reside or
  • Telephone the Queensland Government contact centre on 13 74 68 (13QGOV).

Operational volunteers

Operational volunteers help deliver QAS services in specific locations determined by QAS operational need, usually in rural, remote or isolated communities.  These volunteers are also known as ‘honorary officers’, a title that relates to the Ambulance Service Act 1991 which establishes that honorary ambulance officers are volunteers who carry out such functions of the ambulance service as directed by the Commissioner.

QAS has the following operational ‘honorary’ volunteer roles:

  • Honorary Ambulance Officers
    These volunteers are trained in advanced first aid and can provide initial first aid in response to requests for assistance. In addition, they may also be requested to provide first aid training in the community. Honorary Ambulance Officers are generally available to support single-officer stations. QAS may provide further clinical training for these volunteers depending on operational need.
  • First Responders
    Trained in first aid, First Responders are dispatched in their own vehicles with equipment provided by QAS, to provide initial care to patients in their local community while the ambulance is en-route. For example, they might splint a patient’s leg, or may initiate CPR on a patient who has suffered a cardiac arrest. 
  • Volunteer Drivers
    Volunteer Drivers are generally available in areas where there is a need to support single-officer or hospital-based stations.  These volunteers contribute to the capability and resiliency of their local community by driving the ambulance in non-emergency situations (no lights and sirens), allowing the paramedic to focus on treating the patient during transport to hospital.

QAS provides the necessary training required for operational volunteer roles, for example a first aid qualification or driver training to ensure a volunteer can drive an ambulance safely.  In addition, QAS provides all the necessary equipment for the operational volunteer role, and volunteers are insured while they are delivering services requested by QAS.

Maintaining patient confidentiality is a prime requirement of every QAS operational volunteer.

Locations

Operational volunteers support the QAS in delivering ambulance services to the community in specific locations determined by operational need.  These locations are primarily in rural, remote or isolated communities.
To find out if there are operational volunteers near you, please check the list of locations.  This list includes a telephone contact for your Local Ambulance Service Network (LASN) office.
From time to time, QAS may seek operational volunteers for a specific response area not already identified on the list of locations, or to help supplement existing operational volunteer numbers.  The LASN will advertise these opportunities via local media outlets and QAS social media.
To be considered for an operational volunteer role, you must live within 10 minutes’ drive of the identified response area (or a response time determined by the QAS).

Eligibility requirements for operational volunteers

QAS is committed to maintaining the highest standards of safety and personal integrity in the delivery of services to the Queensland community.  For this reason, all applicants for operational volunteer positions are required to undertake the following as part of the application process:

  • Medical Assessment
    All potential volunteers are required to undertake a medical assessment conducted by a local doctor or GP.  This medical assessment will include confirmation of the applicant’s vaccination / immunisation status.
  • Vaccinations / Immunisations
    Operational volunteers during the course of their duties must be, and remain during appointment as a volunteer, vaccinated against specified infectious diseases as listed below:
    • Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
    • Hepatitis B
    • Measles, Mumps, Rubella
    • Varicella (Chicken Pox)
    • Influenza (annual vaccination)
    • Tuberculosis (TB) (Only applicable if the applicant was born or has resided in a country with a high incidence of TB).
  • Criminal History Check
    As part of the application process, potential volunteers are required to undergo a criminal history check.  Having a criminal history may not necessarily result in disqualification from the process, as it will depend on the nature of the history.

Other eligibility requirements include:


Requirement

Honorary Ambulance Officer

First Responder

Volunteer Driver

‘C’ Class Manual Driver’s Licence

X

X

X

‘Provide or Apply First Aid’ qualification (or higher) or a willingness to undertake this training with QAS

X

X

X

Roadworthy vehicle that is comprehensively insured

 

X

 


Other role-specific training may be required, and will be provided by QAS.
The QAS may request additional information from applicants throughout the application process.  Applicants will be advised of any additional requirements, if any, as part of the assessment process. 

 

Interested?  To find out if there are operational volunteering opportunities in your local area:

Remember!  Operational volunteer roles are not available everywhere in Queensland.  These volunteer roles are primarily located in rural, remote or isolated communities where QAS has determined there is an operational need. To be considered for an operational volunteer role, you must live within 10 minutes’ drive of the identified response area (or a response time determined by the QAS). Your LASN office can advise you.

Please note: becoming an operational volunteer should not be considered a guaranteed pathway to paid employment with QAS for prospective or current university students undertaking their paramedic science or other relevant degree. 

If you are interested in working for QAS in a front-line role, please see the specific recruitment information for Paramedic, Emergency Medical Dispatcher (EMD) or Patient Transport Officer (PTO) positions.

Also, due to the eligibility requirements and nature of the working environment, work experience placements are not possible for front-line QAS roles, such as paramedics, EMDs, PTOs or operational volunteers.  Work experience enquiries should be directed to the relevant LASN.

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Last updated 26 September 2017

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