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Whitireia and Wellington Free Ambulance renew partnership

Whitireia and Wellington Free Ambulance renew partnership

Whitireia NZ Chief Executive Chris Gosling and his Wellington Free Ambulance counterpart Diana Crossan have signed a new 10 year partnership between the two organisations in a ceremony at the Whitireia campus in Porirua.

The new agreement is an extension of the partnership that has seen Whitireia Community Polytechnic deliver the Bachelor of Health Science (Paramedic) programme in conjunction with Wellington Free Ambulance for almost 15 years. It is one of only two accredited paramedic programmes in New Zealand, and the partnership delivery model is the only one of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.

Mr Gosling said the relationship was highly valued by both parties, while Associate Dean Carmel Haggerty said the new agreement was symbolic of how dedicated the Whitireia Faculty of Health is to developing and maintaining its relationships with other organisations in the health sector.

“There is a lot of trust there and a real willingness to work together,” said Ms Haggerty. “This partnership gives the Whitireia paramedic programme both currency and credibility.”

Programme leader Glenn Mitchell agreed, saying students reaped the benefits of such a strong and authentic programme.

Mr Mitchell, who started with Wellington Free Ambulance over 20 years ago and switched to teaching at Whitireia in 2007, said at least a third of the students that had gone through the programme had gone on to work with Wellington Free.

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“Of the current workforce there, I’d say around 80 percent have completed the programme through Whitireia,” he added.

Wellington Free Ambulance Chief Executive Diana Crossan said the partnership with Whitireia enabled Wellington Free to achieve the world-class paramedic care they strive for.

“People often comment on the high standard of clinical expertise of our paramedics, and this is a testament to the Whitireia degree programme.”

ENDS

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