Multi-million pound project to get crews back in the community

Make Ready

Work is about to begin on the first phase of a multi-million pound project to help our crews get back into communities to deliver care more quickly.

We’re upgrading 10 sites at Chelmsford, Great Yarmouth, Hemel Hempstead, King’s Lynn, Luton, Norwich, Peterborough, Southend, Stevenage and Watford to house our new 24/7 Make Ready service. It will see a specialist team work around the clock to ensure all vehicles are cleaned and restocked to a consistently high standard, freeing up operational staff to go back out to respond to patients more quickly while also spending their time back at base focused on other aspects of their work.

The service includes a full check of equipment to make sure any clinical consumables with a short shelf-life are used first, in turn reducing waste and ensuring safety.

A new real-time tracking system is also being installed so that every piece of equipment and medical device can be located at any one time, giving added assurance that vehicles are correctly stocked while making it easier to carry out servicing and repairs. The system will also alert Make Ready staff when a crew has used specific pieces of medical equipment so they can prepare to restock replacements when the vehicle returns to base following an emergency call, again saving time.

It will help future-proof winters to come, and this winter the focus will be on preparation so that the new service can be phased in from the spring. It has been made possible with the help of £6.5m in Department of Health and Social Care funding, while an additional 60 staff will also be recruited in phases to deliver the service from the 10 upgraded sites.

Richard Kirk, Head of Make Ready Services, said: “This important investment is helping us create the infrastructure to allow us to phase in our 24/7 Make Ready service.

“Our plan is to roll out the Make Ready service across the region within the next few years, which will help improve efficiency while also ensuring every vehicle we operate, regardless of where it is based, will be stocked, cleaned and maintained to the same consistently high standards. Employing dedicated Make Ready teams will also free up our frontline staff so that they can back to treating our sickest patients more quickly.”

Update 7th December:

We have been awarded £18,024,000 to fund extensive improvements which will help emergency crews get back into communities to deliver care more quickly.

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has given EEAST the money to replace some of our outdated bases. It comes following a successful bid made by the Suffolk and North East Essex shadow Integrated Care System.

Dr Ed Garratt, Chief Officer for Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which is the lead commissioner of EEAST on behalf of 19 of the region’s CCGs, said: “I’ve seen how valuable the make-ready services are to keeping ambulances well-equipped and in good order. There will be a real benefit to staff to get better quality facilities as well. Put together, it will mean crews get back on the road more quickly, which means that patients in the community will be seen more quickly.”

Published 6th December 2018

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