Date published: 
6 January 2020
Media type: 
Media release
General public

The Australian Government has, for the first time, deployed Australian Medical Assistance Team (AUSMAT) specialists in a domestic setting to provide medical support to people evacuated from bushfire-affected communities.

The eight specialists – two doctors, two nurses, two paramedics and two logisticians – have been deployed to RAAF Base East Sale in Victoria to provide immediate clinical and logistical assistance to evacuees, and to assess the need for additional medical and health support services.

The Acting Australian Government Chief Medical Officer is in discussions with other jurisdictions about whether there is a need for additional AUSMAT specialists to be deployed.

The specialists positioned in East Sale will work closely with Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services and Defence personnel, to ensure their work complements that being conducted by medical staff already on site.

The AUSMAT deployment forms part of the Australian Government’s comprehensive response to the bushfire crisis.

AUSMAT is one of a few World Health Organization globally-verified Type-2 Emergency Medical Teams in the world. This is the first time AUSMAT specialists have been deployed to provide domestic assistance.

This support can be provided to any jurisdiction that seeks it. If other jurisdictions require AUSMAT support, we will meet that demand.

Former ministers: