Click on the play button above to hear the full interview
There are many frontlines in the battle against the coronavirus pandemic, and as we’ve heard previously on Connection Matters Radio, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are, as they have been so many times in the past, taking prominent positions.
One such person, Yorta Yorta woman, Michelle Crilly, spoke to Connection Matters Radio (CMR) about working as an Ambulance Victoria paramedic during the coronavirus pandemic.
“It’s definitely challenging,” Michelle said.
“It’s had a massive impact to our day to day work. Our job was challenging as it already was, trying to help people in every different situations every day, but we’ve had this impact of the pandemic and with this virus, we’ve seen a massive change to our PPE [Personal Protection Equipment]. That’s been the biggest change, I think.”
“They’re just happy to see us”
When asked by CMR if there had been a noticeable change in people’s attitude towards paramedics, Michelle said: “No, people have been supportive, they’re so kind, they’re just happy to see us.
“It’s a stressful situation for them. They’re trying to stay informed as well, they don’t know what’s going on, they’re scared, and so seeing us does provide some relief, even if they can’t see our face, it does provide them with relief that we’re there, we’re there to help.”
Urging community to adhere to guidelines
In delivering a personal message to community, Michelle urged care, caution and adherence to health guidelines.
“One of the messages that I say to everybody is you have to stay home. I know it’s challenging, but please stay home unless it is for those four major reasons.
“When you do go out, it’s very important to wear your mask and to socially distance. If you do have symptoms, even if it’s just mild, like just one runny nose or a cough, just one symptom, just go and get tested.
“If anything happens, don’t be afraid to call triple zero. If it’s anything, just call us, because minutes count in everything.”
Click on the play button above to listen to the full interview