patient transport officer australia ambulance transporting patients
patient transport officer australia ambulance transporting patients
patient transport officer australia ambulance transporting patients

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HLT31115 – Certificate III in Non-Emergency Patient Transport

Non-emergency patient transport is the perfect career choice if you’re the type of person who enjoys driving and assisting others in the community.

There is a lot of growth in this sector, with patient transport companies gradually taking over the transportation of non-acute (non-life-threatening) patients from State-run Ambulance Services.

Patient transport services are also operated by a State Ambulance Service and contract private companies to deliver patient transport services. It’s not uncommon for private company Patient Transport Officers (PTO’s) to wear State Ambulance uniforms when driving.

Complete your Certificate III in Non-emergency Patient Transport

What exactly is Non-Emergency Patient Transport?

These types of services are usually pre-arranged and provided for patients who find it difficult to transport themselves to a facility where they can be treated by a medical professional. In most cases, clinical monitoring or assistance is all that is required of a PTO because an emergency Paramedic is not required.

Patient transport contracting is rapidly becoming an option to relieve the increasing burden on State Ambulance services whose Paramedics are used as a transport service rather than being available to attend an emergency.

If you love variety – this PTO job is for you

As a PTO, you may never know what you’re doing, or where you’ll be going from one day to the next. Every call-out is different, which is one of the most appealing aspects of the job.

Patient Transport Officers enjoy a wide variety of daily tasks; from picking up and dropping off patients, to working alongside other services and health care professionals from doctors, nurses, assistants and other paramedics – which  makes for an enjoyable, stimulating and personally rewarding experience.

A Patient Transport Officer can also be referred to as an Ambulance Transport Attendant (ATA), although as an ATA you may be required to perform more advanced care, requiring knowledge of canulation and cardiac rhythm monitoring.

This is where the HLT51015 – Diploma of Paramedical Science comes in handy and is the preferred qualification, because there could be times when you are called upon to administer more than basic first aid.

Studying this course

Studying this Nationally Recognised qualification is relatively straightforward and does not require advanced knowledge of complicated emergency medical terms or procedures.

The bulk of the learning is completed online, where you work through the course, then attend a 3 day workshop where you get to experience the hands-on aspect of the job. You’ll also become very familiar with the operation of a patient transport vehicle. Typically a Mercedes Sprinter is the model that has been adopted by most patient transport services.

Career Pathways for Patient Transport Officers

Patient transport staff can be also known by different titles depending in which State you live.

  • Non-emergency Patient Transport Officer (NEPT)
  • Ambulance Community or Transport Attendant (ATA) (Diploma qualification is preferred)
  • Private company Patient Transport Officer (PTO)

patient transports ambulance training - patient loading and monitoring student paramedics

Patient Transport Officer (PTO) jobs

Although Nationally Recognised qualifications such as the Certificate III in Non-Emergency Patient Transport are essential, there are no guarantees of employment (it’s the same, no matter which profession you choose). If you’re a great communicator, have a positive and outgoing personality, love talking, possess empathy for all people (regardless of their ethnicity and cultural differences) you’ll be highly suited to the job – and highly employable.

Patient transport jobs can be found on SEEK, CareerOne, Jora, Indeed. (we can provide you with a handy list of links)

There will be future jobs for PTO’s because…

  • An ageing Australian population means increased strain on government health care and patient transport systems, something needs to be done – fast
  • Increased workloads by State Ambulance Services mean local communities have a need to be serviced more often
  • Corporate managers must find new ways to stop using ambulances as ‘taxi’ services which creates delays in emergency paramedic attendance response times
  • Critically ill patient’s lives are put at risk as more and more ambulance paramedics are diverted to patient transport operations
  • State and Federal governments have a duty of care to provide a responsive and efficient medical transportation system
  • Private companies are capitalising on the patient transport growth and building new networks

Read this article about jobs:
Patient Transport Officer/Attendant jobs on the rise (read more)

About you

  • you’ll have a sincere and empathetic attitude towards other people
  • be physically fit and maintain a good level of health
  • be of sound character and have high levels of emotional intelligence
  • have naturally developed high-levels of emotional intelligence
  • have the ability to empathise and care for others in need
  • possess clear decision making, judgement skills and the ability to act quickly
  • have the ability to cope in stressful situations
  • be highly developed communication skills across all cultures and social demographics
  • can effortlessly work on your own or collaborate well in a team
  • be able to solve problems and rise to the challenges of the job
  • possess a high level of interpersonal awareness and emotional intelligence
  • the ability to follow processes and procedures effectively
  • …be prepared to roll up your sleeves, wash and maintain your ambulance

Additional tasks of a PTO

Patient Transport Officers are expected to maintain an excellent driving record, with a current Class C licence and be comfortable driving a range of manual and automatic vehicles such as the Mercedes Sprinter.

Image result for mercedes sprinter ambulance

As part of your role, you may also be responsible for undertaking minor motor vehicle maintenance such as checking the oil, water, brake fluid levels, tyre pressure, cleaning/washing, etc.


What You’ll Be Studying

View the units you will study in the HLT31115 – Certificate III in Non-emergency Patient Transport

Apply Now

Complete your Certificate III in Non-emergency Patient Transport
  1. Application to study and interview records reviewed by selection panel.
  2. If successful, a formal offer will be made to study at the College
    [should you be successful at the interview stage approval for minimal weekly payments can be endorsed]
  3. Student acceptance
  4. Confirmation of enrolment

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