Update from Dr Anthony Marsh: 2nd October

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This week marks several significant milestones in the recovery of our organisation; today we can confirm the details of the pay banding agreement that we have reached with UNISON to create two new roles at EEAST; senior paramedic and senior EMT. This is one element of our work to better support staff and these roles are open to our paramedics and EMTs. The full details have been published in a separate article

I am thrilled to announce we have surpassed my objective of recruiting 400 student paramedics and have now recruited a total of 641 frontline staff, which also includes direct entry paramedics and technicians and our healthcare referral tier (HCRT) staff. Many of these will be operational before Christmas and all will have joined the Trust by April. This is a huge success and has been achieved in less than nine months, and I would like to thank our HR team, training team and everyone who has been involved in making this happen. 

Here is the most up-to-date breakdown of staff who are joining the Trust: 

  • 503 offers have now been made to student paramedics (which includes some of our own ECAs)
  • 61 paramedics and graduate paramedics have joined directly
  • 15 technicians have joined directly
  • 62 staff have been recruited to our HCRT.

This has considerably bolstered our frontline and you will soon see the benefits. Having hundreds more staff will mean we can get to patients more quickly and provide earlier treatment, achieve our targets and deliver better patient care. 

It doesn’t stop there either; our current vacancy for student paramedics closes on Sunday and we have received a further 437 applications so far – so please share if you know anyone who would like to join us. 

Our internal progression is also continuing apace – the deadline for applications to the EMT to paramedic pathway has passed and emails will be sent to successful candidates this week; which means that more than 50 staff will be on this pathway this year. Our latest ECA to EMT course finishes in Beccles on Friday and another 12 ECAs start their course in Peterborough on 13th October, bringing the total to 40. We are making progress on how a modular ECA – EMT course will work, and will have more news on this soon.  

Whilst we know that we need to keep recruiting more frontline staff, we also need to improve some of the infrastructure of the Trust and that is what we are actively starting to do now; I visited Bedford control room this afternoon to discuss the CAD problems we have experienced in the last 24 hours and would like to thank staff for working under these difficult circumstances. We have set up a silver cell and are closely monitoring the system. 

You will all be aware that there is planned industrial action for the week commencing 13th October. We are working with Unison to produce a clear set of Q&As and guidance around this for staff, which will be published next week to provide you with all the information that you need. 

As I have promised before, I will not stop supporting you until EEAST is an ambulance service you are all proud to work for.

Published 2nd October, 2014


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