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On the front line: Essendon MICA Flight Paramedic Ray Cornelius

MICA paramedic

Ray Cornelius knows a thing or two about saving lives.

A Mobile Intensive Care Ambulance (MICA) Flight Paramedic, he’s flown all over the state to care for those seriously injured and ill.

He’s got a simple message on how we can all be lifesavers.

“We know that social distancing is the only way to slow the rate of infection. Put simply, you can save lives by staying on the couch,” Mr Cornelius said.

The paramedics at Essendon Fields Airport are on the frontline of the battle against the coronavirus. At the start of each shift, they conduct health checks on each other, to make sure everyone is safe to be at work. They’re armed with protective gear: gloves, masks, goggles and splash-proof gowns, and follow strict decontamination procedures following the transfer of patients suspected or confirmed as being infectious.

“I worry more for my family than myself – if there’s a chance I could bring home the virus,” Mr Cornelius said.

It’s why he was over the moon with the government’s offer of free hotel accommodation for frontline workers that need to self-isolate.

“That’s a huge weight off our shoulders if we feel we need to do so to keep the people we love safe,” he said.

Next time you see the Air Ambulance fly over Moonee Valley, think about those paramedics inside, still at work and heed Ray Cornelius’ plea: “Please take this seriously. As a community, we all have to work together to beat this! We’re out here for you and we need everyone to stay at home for us.”

Ray Cornelius is one of our community members helping to #rallymooneevalley during the coronavirus State of Emergency. If you have a story of an individual or group rallying in the face of the outbreak, we’d love to hear about it. Simply register here, and submit an article.