Rumour busting: ECA to EMT pathway

Side of RRV with lozenge

There have been a lot of questions and rumours making their way around the Trust about the ECA to EMT development pathway – here Chief Executive Anthony Marsh sorts the fact from the fiction!

Are you getting rid of the ECA to EMT programme?

Absolutely not. When I joined the Trust last year there no development pathway for ECAs at all – now we have implemented an ECA to Technician course that can be completed as a whole or as a modular option. Those who don’t want to wait for their full course date can volunteer to complete the modular version which is being managed locally in each sector.

Will the dates we’ve been given for the ECA to EMT courses be moved further away because of student paramedic recruitment?

No. The dates you’ve been given for your conversion course will be honoured.

Why can’t the ECA programme be fast-tracked so we can become EMTs more quickly?

I share your ambition to get everyone through their development programmes as soon as we can; but we have to get the basics right first and ensure we have sufficient frontline to provide adequate backfill. Courses are planned for 2015/16 and allocations for 2016/17 are being worked on between training and the locality managers in each patch, so you’ll be contacted once this is done. We won’t be looking to accelerate those further at the moment because we have to make sure that we still have enough people on the road responding to our patients.

We are however, looking to reduce the amount of time taken for ECAs to qualify as EMTs and further information will be provided on Need to Know soon.

Do I have to pay for the standard ECA to EMT course?

No. If you wait for the course date you’ve been given you will abstracted to complete it.

If I opt to do the modular course instead, why do I have to complete it in my own time?

After the standard ECA-EMT pathway was implemented, a number of staff contacted both myself and the training team asking us to consider a modular conversion course that could be completed voluntarily over a longer period of time. So because it was asked for, we created a modular course. It’s not compulsory to complete the modular version so if you don’t like the idea of doing it, simply don’t volunteer for it. Staff who instead wish to wait for the full, abstracted course can absolutely do so.

Why is the modular course only available in one locality at the moment?

It was agreed that the modular course would be arranged and set up individually in each locality; Essex’s first course is starting this month, and the Beds & Herts and NSC teams are working on getting a conversion course set up soon. Please speak to your senior locality manager to find out what stage the plans are at for your area.

I want to reiterate to you all that the ECA to EMT progression programme is continuing absolutely as planned – it has not been slowed or deferred and this will remain the case.

I value each and every one of you as staff and I, and the rest of the Board, are absolutely committed to making your working lives better, investing in your development and to make our service better for patients. We have already taken some big steps and made some significant improvements, and I know I can count on your support to help us continue to turn our service around.

Anthony Marsh, Chief Executive

Leave a Comment
Name (required)
Email Address (required, never displayed)
Enter a message

(all comments are moderated - your submission will be posted on approval.)

This is a printable version of