Suffolk: First day on the frontline for region’s student paramedics
14:08 23 June 2014
Student paramedics took a huge step in their careers today as they joined the frontline to treat patients.
The group are the first to complete their training as part of the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust’s (EEAST) push to recruit 400 student paramedics by April 2015.
As part of a two-and-a-half year course to become fully-qualified paramedics, initial training began in April with eight weeks in the classroom before three weeks of blue light driver training which finished last week.
Dr Anthony Marsh, EEAST’s chief executive, said: “It’s fantastic that the first group of students are now out treating patients. They are embarking on a rewarding career and will be in a very privileged position in their communities, improving patient care and being part of the frontline.”
The students will now work on an ambulance with an allocated mentor while they work towards becoming a registered paramedic.
Nicola Irons, training and education manager, added: “Our team has worked hard to ensure as many people as possible have started courses in the last three months, and with this group completing the very intense initial training already, we are starting to reap the benefits of the efforts put in.”
EEAST has been recruiting since January and nearly 100 people are on courses across the region, with more than 200 offers of employment made.
As well as recruiting 400 student paramedics, EEAST is also working to progress current staff, including funding 24 emergency medical technicians to become paramedics through a foundation degree course in paramedic science.
Interim consultant paramedic Marcus Bailey said: “Many have made personal sacrifices in order to undertake this role, already showing their determination.
“Over the next two years they will work towards their qualifications that will lead to eligibility to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council.
“Our students have a vital role in our future success in providing quality care for our patients.”