St John Ambulance Australia New South Wales

St John Ambulance Australia (N.S.W.) (St John NSW) is a self-funding first aid service charitable organisation dedicated to helping people in sickness, distress, suffering or danger. It is part of an international organisation that consists of eight Priories that form the Order of St John. The organisation is sometimes incorrectly referred to "St John's Ambulance" or "St Johns Ambulance" instead of "St John Ambulance".

St John Ambulance Australia (N.S.W.)
MottoSaving Lives Through First Aid
Formation1883; 137 years ago (1883)
TypeCharitable organisation
Limited company
HeadquartersBurwood, New South Wales, 2134
A/P Jason C. Bendall PhD MBBS
Key people
Sean McGuinness (Chairman )
Sarah Lance (CEO)
Parent organisation
St John Ambulance Australia
AffiliationsOrder of St John

History of St John AmbulanceEdit

In the Nineteenth Century a group of citizens revived the Order of St John in England, drawing their inspiration from the example of the Knights of St John who, in medieval times, offered care and shelter for pilgrims and crusaders.

St John Ambulance was subsequently formed to put its humanitarian ideals into practice in the new industrial society, promoting the cause of first aid for the sick and wounded through volunteer effort - a novel concept at the time and a much-needed one.

The movement spread to Australia in 1883 and has since developed into the organisation that we know today. The work of the Order of St John is carried out in many countries around the world. St John is a Royal Order of Chivalry with the Queen as its Sovereign Head.

Activity streamsEdit

St John NSW has several areas of focus:

Event Health ServicesEdit

St John provides First Aiders, First Responders, Advanced Responders and Health Care Professionals to provide comprehensive medical services ranging from small community events (such as school fates and sports days, corporate events), to large public events such as ANZAC day services, Sydney Royal Easter Show, City2Surf, Music Festivals, and New Year's Eve celebrations.[1]

Previously known as First Aid Services (FAS), and Operations Branch (OB).


St John Ambulance is one of the largest first aid training organisations in Australia. St John NSW delivers nationally recognised training through the Australian Qualifications Framework, through the registration of their parent organisation St John Ambulance Australia.


St John NSW can provide training to the public for units of competency including:

  • Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Provide basic emergency life support
  • Provide first aid (previously known as Apply First Aid and Senior First Aid)
  • Provide an emergency first aid response in an education and care setting
  • Provide first aid in remote situations
  • Provide advanced first aid
  • Provide advanced resuscitation
  • Manage first aid services and resources
  • Provide pain management
  • Perform rescue from a live LV panel

Revenue derived from training is reinvested into training volunteers and community programs to promote the cause of saving lives through first aid awareness.


St John NSW members undergo internal training programs to obtain clinical qualifications and positions within the organisation.

  • St John First Aiders hold:
    • Provide first aid
  • St John First Responders hold:
    • Requirements of St John First Aider
    • Provide advanced first aid
    • Provide advanced resuscitation
    • Provide pain management
    • Certificate II in Medical Service First Response
  • St John Advanced Responders hold:
    • Requirements of St John First Responder
    • Certificate III in Basic Health Care
  • Senior officers hold:
    • Certificate IV in Leadership and Management
  • Trainers hold:
    • Certificate IV in Training and Assessment

Members must undergo yearly reaccreditation and minimum hours to hold clinical ranks. Other positions also require ongoing professional development to demonstrate currency.

St John NSW does not train paramedics or offer diplomas in paramedical science programs in NSW.

Education and AwarenessEdit

As advocates for first aid, St John NSW volunteer trainers deliver first aid skills in the community.[2]

St John NSW supports and funds a "First Aid in Schools" program aimed and engaging primary school aged students in first aid.[3] St John continues to use its influence to promote early education in schools across Australia.[4]

Examples of the program success is becoming more visible in the media:

  • Nikita Stutchbury saves mother, October 2015[5]
  • Zach Redwood saves five-year-old brother, March 2016[6][7]
  • Preston May saves little brother, March 2016[8]

Recognition programs are in place to award the public for use of first aid and CPR skills in the community. "Save a Life Award was an important opportunity to publicly acknowledge the admirable actions of recipients, and thank them on behalf of patients, their families and the local community."[9]

St John produce and distribute publications aimed at educating the general public including posters and fact sheets. The "St John Australian First Aid Manual" is widely distributed and is edited by a clinical board yearly to align with the most current evidence available.

St John Ambulance Australia has created and operates an Automated External Defibrillators (AED) register. The register aims to help locate this essential equipment often required in cardiac arrest.


St John NSW offers several services including:

  • First aid kit manufacture and sales (direct or through local retailers)
  • First aid stock manufactured and distribution
  • Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) sales including equip, install and compliance check
  • Kit audit and restock services for state Work Health and Safety Act compliance.[10]

First aid equipment is also utilised within the Event Health Services branch.

Ophthalmic CareEdit

St John NSW raises funds and recruits staff for "ophthalmic projects in rural and remote areas of Northern NSW" the St John Ophthalmic Eye Hospital in Jerusalem.[11]

Emergency ResponseEdit

Stub to expand St John NSW is a "participating organisation under the NSW HEALTHPLAN and maintains a formal resource commitment agreement with NSW Health"[12] to assist in disaster relief activities.[13]


St John Ambulance has 72 divisions across New South Wales from 18 areas. Combined divisions include both adult members as well as cadet and junior members. Cadet divisions are only for cadets and junior members, and all other divisions are for adults over 18 years old only.


An older style Volkswagen Transporter ambulance used for events

Vehicles are used within St John NSW to support the organisational needs and values.

Event Health ServicesEdit

All the event health services vehicles are fitted with flashing red or red and white beacons, sirens, highly visible vehicle livery as well as radio communications.

Strict internal policies applies to the use of lights and sirens.

Casualty Management VehiclesEdit

An ambulance or patient transport vehicle that is either two or four-wheel drive. This type of vehicle is fitted with a stryker stretcher, piped oxygen, and other pre-hospital care equipment.

Communications VehiclesEdit

Vehicles used by the state communications group to provide radio communications for events.

Bicycle Emergency Response VehiclesEdit

Vehicles used by the bicycle emergency response team to transport bicycles and other equipment to and from events.

Command VehiclesEdit

Vehicles driven by members of command staff for duties to and from the event.

Business StreamEdit

Stub to expand Vehicles may be used for specialist business areas, such as the equipment supply and restocking business stream. Vehicle livery is intended to match the vehicle purpose, and may possess either corporate or service specific branding.

Role SpecificEdit

Stub to expand Where the Board and/or the CEO has determine that a vehicle is required for effective performance in the job role, that role may access or be assigned a fleet vehicle. Vehicles are either plain in appearance, or branded with corporate livery.

St John NSW Volunteer Executive State PositionsEdit

Position Commissioner Deputy Commissioner - Volunteering Deputy Commissioner - Advisory Deputy Commissioner - Youth
Position holder Associate Professor Jason C Bendall OStJ PhD MBBS BMedSci(Hons) MM(ClinEpi) FANZCA FANZCP Trude Salat Ilan Lowbeer Andrew Stevens

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Event Health Services". 27 September 2019. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  2. ^ "We're for Sydney". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  3. ^ "First Aid in Schools". Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  4. ^ "We're for Sydney". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  5. ^ "We're for Sydney". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  6. ^ "We're for Sydney". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  7. ^ [1][dead link]
  8. ^ "We're for Sydney". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  9. ^ "We're for Sydney". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  10. ^ "Workplace Training". Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  11. ^ "Ophthalmic Care". 27 September 2019. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  12. ^ "Important notice about this page". Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  13. ^ "St John volunteers assist with NSW bushfire emergency". 24 October 2013. Retrieved 9 October 2019.

External linksEdit