Suffolk: Report criticises East of England Ambulance Service’s turnaround plan

Anthony Marsh, CEO of the West Midlands Ambulance Service.

Anthony Marsh, CEO of the West Midlands Ambulance Service. - Credit: Archant

The boss of Britain’s best performing ambulance service has hit out at the turnaround plan for the failing East of England emergency service.

In an independent review into the East of England Ambulance Service Trust Anthony Marsh, said the current board and senior management team appeared to have developed a sense of “helplessness” and said there was a lack of “cohesive” plan.

The chief executive of the West Midlands Ambulance Service, who was parachuted into the NHS trust in March to conduct a review into the failing organisation, has offered to provide continuing support to improve services for patients.

The under-performing ambulance trust already has an interim chief executive and interim chairman in place.

East Anglia’s MPs were briefed this afternoon by Mr Marsh and officials from the NHS Trust Development Authority in Westminster.

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The East of England Ambulance Service is still failing to hit is target of responding to 85pc of the most life-threatening emergencies within eight minutes.

The health watchdog, the Care Quality Commission, told the management of the trust earlier this year to improve its performance because of slow response times.

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Dr Geoff Harris, interim chairman of the NHS trust, said: “One of the first tasks will be for me, with the board, to review the findings of this report and submit a formal response to the NHS Trust Development Authority. Any changes needed to our existing turnaround plan, which the trust published in April, to incorporate the recommendations will be implemented promptly.

“In addition, the findings of the clinical capacity review currently underway will identify what resources the trust needs to meet patient demand and how those resources should be deployed to best effect. The trust’s turnaround plan has recognised many of the issues we need to address and we are focussed on implementing this, together with recommendations from the governance review to improve services for our patients.”

For full story see tomorrow’s papers.

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