Monday 16th December 2013 – 10.00am – Claire Brown.
A community paramedic in Solihull was joined by a local MP this morning to witness, first hand, the life-saving work of the service.
Liberal Democrat MP for Solihull, Lorely Burt, reported for duty at 7.00am to jump on board an ambulance response car with Shirley Community Paramedic Andy Parr.
During her shift, Lorely had an insight into the life and work of an advanced paramedic by responding to two 999 calls; an elderly man with breathing difficulties and an elderly woman who had collapsed at home.
As well as witnessing Andy at work, Lorely had the chance to visit his base at the community ambulance station in Shirley, situated in a Sir Josiah Mason Trust’s sheltered accommodation complex on Green Lane.
Lorely concluded her visit at the ‘Make Ready’ ambulance preparation and maintenance Hub in Erdington which became operational in September and marked the final phase of the project in Birmingham.
This week the Trust took the decision to base double staffed emergency paramedic ambulances in some towns across the Region. Solihull will be one of those towns to benefit from this change.
Talking about her visit, Lorely Burt said: “I’m immensely grateful to West Midlands Ambulance Service for a really illuminating and interesting morning with Andy, the advanced paramedic. Most of all I am delighted at the news that three two-crewed ambulances will now be stationed at Solihull, Shirley and Olton. After a six-month campaign involving people from local residents right up to the Prime Minister, we now have a much better ambulance service for people in Solihull.
“But there is still work to be done, and some of the problems are beyond the control of the ambulance service. One of the things I have learned today is that many of the delays are caused by problems with the A&E at Heartlands Hospital.
“I am grateful to West Midlands Ambulance Service for showing that when I put my constituents’ concerns to them, they are prepared to listen.”
Nathan Hudson, the Trust’s General Manager for Birmingham, said: “It’s a pleasure to welcome MPs, such as Lorely, to see the inner workings of our ambulance service.
“The life-saving work of our staff and the challenges they face are difficult to truly understand without witnessing it for yourself. I hope the observational shift that Lorely has undertaken today has helped to further strengthen her views on the fantastic work of our staff in providing a fast response and the right care to patients when they need it the most.
“The decision to move ambulances to local communities, such as Solihull, is one that is being replicated elsewhere as part of a review to further enhance and refine Make Ready.”
Notes to Editor:
Pictured: MP Lorely Burt with Dean Jenkins (Area Manager North Birmingham) outside the Trust’s Erdington Hub.