Sinn Féin Foyle MP Elisha McCallion has met with the Chief Executive of the Ambulance Service to discuss concerns regarding Ambulance cover in the Foyle area.
Speaking after the meeting, Foyle MP Elisha McCallion said that she requested the meeting with Micheal Bloomfield after concerns were raised with her.
“Recently, concerns regarding the Ambulance Service were brought to my attention. Today I put those concerns directly to the Chief Executive of the Ambulance Service Michael Bloomfield and the area Manager for the Western Region, Laura Coulter.”
“We had a very open and honest conversation about the issues and pressures facing the Ambulance Service, especially in a time where Tory Austerity is stripping the Health Service to the bone”
Mc Callion said she welcomed the fact that senior figures within the Ambulance Service were aware of the problems and are currently working towards the delivery of a new clinical response model among other initiatives to improve efficiency within the service and to reduce the level of stress faced by staff. Currently there is around a 10% absence rate within the service and a recent review determined that an extra 330 frontline staff would be needed to offset the current pressures faced.
“Mr Bloomfield informed me that they are hoping to launch a public consultation later in the year with regards to the new clinical response model. I welcome his approach to the pressures faced and when speaking to him and Ms Coulter, they couldn’t praise the staff in the Western region enough for standard of service that they provide to the public. I want to echo that praise.”
“We also discussed the worrying topic of attacks on Paramedics, including two who have been attacked in the last week whilst on duty. I want to express my utter disgust at this and condemn outright these actions. Members of our emergency services should be free to do their job without the added pressure and fear of being attacked.”