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Suffolk: Ambulance service launches drive to recruit student paramedics

PUBLISHED: 07:03 24 January 2014 | UPDATED: 07:03 24 January 2014

Anthony Marsh.

Anthony Marsh.

Archant

A major recruitment drive has been launched by the region’s under-fire ambulance service in a bid to hire hundreds of student paramedics.

The new chief executive of the East of England Ambulance Service (EEAST), Dr Anthony Marsh, says the main aim is to help fill the large number of vacancies in the service and offer career opportunities to people in East Anglia.

He has also pledged to tackle the issues facing the trust and said the drive was “a great step forward for staff, patients and local communities”.

Dr Marsh added: “This programme will secure new employees for the service who will learn on the job and in the classroom.

“It is a great opportunity for anyone who has ever thought of becoming a paramedic and helping people in their community, sometimes in their greatest hour of need.

“We are aiming to recruit 400 students, and while this may be an ambitious target, it means we will have a whole lot of fully qualified paramedics on the road responding to our patients in the future.

“This is a great step forward for our service.”

The training programme for a student paramedic to qualify takes two and half years to complete and EEAST will then offer the successful participants full-time paramedic contracts.

Dr Marsh said: “This is a really exciting opportunity for people who want to work with us and who want to care for patients almost straight away.

“We will be giving students vital hands-on experience throughout the course, and offer of a job at the end of it.” As well as recruiting new students, the service is continuing to recruit graduate paramedics and qualified technicians and paramedics.

The ambulance service has faced increased pressure in recent months over failures to hit key targets.

At a board meeting in November, bosses said they still needed to boost frontline worker numbers – a review suggests the organisation needs 310 extra staff, including paramedics, in 2014/15.

Engineers worked through the night to restore power to households across Suffolk and north Essex after the region was battered by winds of over 70mph.

Commuters using Greater Anglia trains in Suffolk and Essex are facing further disruption after the region’s rail network was brought to its knees by yesterday’s storm.

The mother of a selfless Suffolk fundraiser is continuing her daughter’s fight to persuade women and girls to have smear tests in her honour.

An alliance of schools in Ipswich has won £20,000 of funding to boost the quality of teaching in the area through better use of research.

A car has rolled onto its roof following a single vehicle collision on the A12 at Copdock.

A well-known Elvis impersonator from Ipswich has died at the age of 57 following a short battle with cancer.

A Second World War hand grenade has been destroyed in a controlled explosion after being handed in at Felixstowe Police Station by a member of the public.

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