WEST Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) will receive an extra £5,685,000 extra funding to help it deal with the forthcoming winter pressures.
The cash – part of an NHS England £55million boost to ambulance trusts across the country – comes as WMAS has had its busiest days of the year so far.
Last Monday there were 6,406 emergency calls across the West Midlands in one day – it was 600 more than the previous record set a week before.
Figures show 19 our of the 20 busiest days had come in the past month.
The NHS England funding is specifically aimed at increasing the number of 999 call handlers, putting extra crews on the road, providing additional clinical support in control rooms and extending the availability of hospital ambulance liaison officers (HALOs) at the most challenged acute trusts and increase the number of emergency ambulances available for the winter.
WMAS Trust chief executive Anthony Marsh welcomed the funding which he said came at a time when all ambulance services were under immense pressure.
“We have already started recruiting for additional call handlers and will work up other schemes that will allow us to make progress on meeting other key standards as soon as possible.”
At the start of the pandemic WMAS was able to recruit hundreds of extra staff who played a key role in the service’s ability to handle the rise in Covid-19 call numbers.
Mr Marsh added: “We had people from all walks of life join us as call handlers – hundreds of students worked on our ambulances and helped to prepare the vehicles.
“Speaking to those staff, I don’t believe any of them would say they weren’t proud to have helped keep our nation safe.
“Working for the NHS is a real privilege, and I would encourage anyone who wants a great career to think about joining us.”
Visit www.jobs.nhs.uk for more on the vacancies within the trust.