Ambulance Service Looking To Merge With Neighbour

Patients in Scilly won’t notice a change in service quality if our ambulance service merges with one upcountry.

South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust boss, Ken Wenman, says he has been asked by their Bristol area counterpart to begin talks over a merger.

If it goes ahead, our regional service would incorporate the Great Western Ambulance service, which serves the Somerset, Wiltshire and Gloucestershire areas, under a single   ambulance trust from October 2012.

Ken says the proposal will save money but will also allow SWAST to develop its business and generate a larger cash surplus to put into training and services.

The Trust will need to go through the books and gain board and regulator approval before any changes next year.

From Radio Scilly

Ken Wenman talks about the proposals

Ken says our islands’ representative on the Trust’s Council of Governors is aware of the plans, but says the Council health board haven’t been formally told of the plans as it is early days.

However, he says it shouldn’t come as a surprise as the Trust have made it clear for some time that they have been looking to merge.

Although we will be further away from decision makers if the Trust extends further upcountry, Ken says islanders shouldn’t feel they will be marginalised. He says the islands will still be represented on the Trust and many management and clinical decisions will continue to occur locally.