14 new ambulance posts set to be introduced to reduce on-call working
Fourteen new ambulances posts are set to be introduced in the North and West regions of Scotland to reduce on-call working, as part of the announcement of an extra £20m of funding by the Scottish Government.
The new ambulance posts, seven in the North region, and seven in the West region, will see new paramedics and ambulance technicians introduced to help reduce or eliminate on-call working, and provide twenty-four hour ambulance cover.
The welfare of staff is one of the Scottish Ambulance Service’s top priorities and the removal of on-call working will also improve the work/life balance of staff and reduce fatigue.
Out of these fourteen new ambulance posts, there will be three new ambulance posts in Broadford in Skye, where on-call will be eliminated, and where these new staff will be aligned with periods of increased demand. This will be in addition to the investment as part of the Scottish Ambulance Service’s Demand and Capacity programme to reduce on-call hours in Dunvegan and Kyle.
Two new ambulance posts will be introduced to Fort William, which will eliminate on-call working there.
Two new ambulance posts will be introduced in Kirkwall, bringing the number of staff to 16 across Orkney, in addition to an Advanced Practitioner Post which is now filled.
Seven new ambulance posts will also be introduced in Campeltown to significantly reduce on-call working, and to ensure the staff will cover periods of high demand.
This additional funding is on top of the £20 million Scottish Government funding injection over the last two years. Additional ambulances and low acuity resources will also be introduced as part of the new resources to help meet current and projected patient needs through the Demand and Capacity programme.
Pauline Howie, Chief Executive of the Scottish Ambulance Service said: “This funding announcement for fourteen new ambulance posts is great news. The additional paramedics and technicians will help to ensure we can provide full cover in some of our stations, including in Fort William and on Skye.
“These new measures will help to boost our capacity at a time when the NHS as a whole is facing unprecedented pressures, and will offer reassurance to communities across the region that we are investing in people and boosting our resilience.”
Health Secretary Humza Yousaf said:
“The Scottish Ambulance Service is the heartbeat of our NHS. It has a unique role in engaging with all parts of the health and social care system across the whole of Scotland – 24 hours of every day. It is vital that we ensure it has the support it needs to perform this crucial role which is why we announced an additional £20 million funding last week.
“These additional posts will help to improve the level of service for communities in these rural areas while reducing the pressure on the workforce, who are doing so much to serve the public during these incredibly demanding times.”