Victorians are being reminded to only dial 000 only for emergencies, freeing up busy emergency departments to treat serious cases and save lives.

The ‘Save 000 for emergencies’ advertising campaign aims to raise awareness of alternative services available for minor injuries and ailments.

Fewer people attending emergencies departments for minor injuries and alignments means resources can be directed to where they are needed most – treating people needing vital and lifesaving treatment for conditions such as heart attacks, strokes and serious injuries from accidents.

The campaign by the Victorian Government is a series of television and print advertisements encouraging people to talk to their pharmacist for things such as minor cuts and wounds.

Importantly, the advertisement explains that pharmacists will refer people to a GP or other medical service if necessary.

The advertisements highlight health scenarios of services local pharmacists can assist with and include the treatment of minor home and hobby injuries, sore tummies and gastro, light sporting injuries such as strains and sprains, as well as immunisations.

When an ambulance responds to a non-emergency, it takes paramedics away from time critical, life-threatening emergencies.

While calls for ambulances continue to grow  with 2.92 per cent growth in demand from triple zero callers in 2017-18, not all of this growth is associated with genuine need and may have tied up ambulance services unnecessarily.

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