A man with a broken ankle located 10 minutes from Launceston was told by a triple zero operator they did not know when an ambulance would be able to assist him because emergency services were responding to four other life-threatening incidents.
Although his injury was not initially a high-priority case, the man suffers from high blood pressure which was at a level considered dangerous by the time an ambulance arrived three hours after first called.
An Ambulance Tasmania spokeswoman said at the time when this call was made to assist with what was described as a possible fractured ankle, the service was attending a number of life-threatening medical emergencies, including a person suffering stroke, a person with breathing difficulties, a person with severe chest pain and a case involving a critical aero-medical transfer.
"The primary function of Ambulance Tasmania paramedics is to save lives," the spokeswoman said.
"Tasmanians can be assured that if their life is on the line, Ambulance Tasmania's triage protocols will ensure they are prioritised for treatment - which is what occurred in this case.
"An ambulance was dispatched as soon as the more urgent cases had been seen to."
Alan Jordan, of Drivers Run, broke two bones in his ankle when walking his dog at 4pm last Tuesday.
Because he had not taken his mobile phone with him, it took him an hour to crawl back to his house where he contacted his partner Andrew Brown who rushed home and called for help.
Mr Brown said he called triple zero three times before an ambulance arrived shortly after 8pm.
The operator told Mr Brown not to move Mr Jordan.
"His foot was just dangling there. He was obviously in a lot of pain," he said.
When he rang the second time at 7pm to check on the status of an ambulance, Mr Brown was told by the operator they did not know when anyone would be able to come and assist them.
"If you dial triple zero you need to have someone there or you need to be told they aren't coming," he said.
"You can get Uber Eats to tell you when your food is going to arrive, why can't they?"
Mr Brown said it was not great to live in Tasmania if you were sick.
"Although this was a lower priority as a broken ankle, I expected a bit better service. It's an expectation that I had from living on the mainland that clearly doesn't apply here."
Mr Brown said although his partner had suffered physical pain, it was the trauma of having to crawl home and then wait on the floor for three hours that was unreasonable.
Mr Jordan was admitted to the Launceston General Hospital on Tuesday night and a specialist surgeon flew down from the mainland to operate on his ankle on Friday.
"It's not an isolated incident," Mr Brown said.
Mr Brown recounted his own experience last year when he had appendicitis and had to drive himself to the LGH because he was told there was no ambulance available.
"I was actually told to come back the next morning when they weren't so busy," Mr Brown said.
"When I was admitted, I had to wait for more than five hours even though I knew what I had was life-threatening. I was put in a bed and they couldn't operate on me for a whole day because they didn't have theatre space."
Mr Brown said he was instead sent to St Vincent's where he was operated on within 20 minutes.