Am­bu­lance ser­vice needs im­prove­ment

CQC raises a num­ber of is­sues with East of Eng­land Am­bu­lance Ser­vice

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - News - By Stephen Briggs stephen.briggs@pe­ter­bor­oughto­ Twit­ter: @PTstephenB

The East of Eng­land Am­bu­lance Ser­vice has been told it ‘re­quires im­prove­ment’ fol­low­ing an in­spec­tion by the Care Qual­ity Com­mis­sion (CQC). Eng­land’s Chief In­spec­tor of Hos­pi­tals has told East of Eng­land Am­bu­lance Ser­vice NHS Trust that it must make im­prove­ments fol­low­ing an in­spec­tion by the CQC.

CQC’s in­spec­tion looked at three ser­vices: Emer­gency Op­er­a­tions Cen­tres, Ur­gent and Emer­gency Care in­clud­ing the Haz­ardous Area Re­sponse Team and Pa­tient Transport Ser­vices.

Heidi Smoult, Deputy Chief I nspec­tor of Hos­pi­tals in CQC’s cen­tral re­gion, said: “Our in­spec­tors found that a num­ber of im­prove­ments were needed at East of Eng­land Am­bu­lance Ser­vice NHS Trust. All staff were pas­sion­ate about pro­vid­ing the best pos­si­ble ser­vice to pa­tients. We con­sis­tently ob­served staff to be car­ing and com­pas­sion­ate and con­cerned for the wel­fare of pa­tients. How­ever, they also openly recog­nised they faced chal­lenges. Somestaffre­ported reg­u­larly work­ing more hours than their shift al­lo­ca­tion which had a neg­a­tive im­pact on morale. Our main con­cern­waswhetherser­vices were pro­tect­ing peo­ple from the risk of avoid­able harm. The trust was un­der sig­nif­i­cant pres­sure and was fail­ing to meet per­for­mance stan­dards and tar­gets for re­sponse to emer­gency calls.”

Mrs Smoult said de­lays at hos­pi­tal emer­gency de­part­ments also caused prob­lems, andin­spec­tors werenot­given as­sur­ancesover­stafftrain­ing.

She added: “There were sev­eral ar­eas we were im­pressed by. We saw many ex­am­ple­sof­staffact­ing with the ut­most pro­fes­sion­al­ism and sup­port­ing pa­tients in the most try­ing of cir­cum­stances to pro­vide pos­i­tive out­comes. The trust should be proud of its Out­stand­ing rat­ing for be­ing car­ing.”

Robert Mor­ton Chief Ex­ec­u­tive at the East of Eng­land Am­bu­lance Ser­vice NHS Trust said: “We have made huge steps for­ward over the last year and this progress is re­flected in the re­port. We know we have more work to do, to move us from ‘re­quires im­prove­ment’ to ‘good’, and we have in place a plan to ad­dress the points raised by the CQC.”

Mr Mor­ton said he was proud of his staff, as the trust was rated as ‘out­stand­ing’ for pro­vid­ing care to pa­tients.

Am­bu­lance staff showed care for pa­tients

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