The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has today published its report
following a planned inspection of South East Coast Ambulance
Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) in May 2017.

While the report recognises that progress since the previous
inspection in May 2016 has been made in some areas, it concludes
this has not been as rapid or as widespread as it might have been,
meaning the Trust continues to fall short in the quality and safety
of some of its services.

The Trust is proud that the significant improvement in the 111
service has been recognised and that, once again, staff across all
services have been rated as ‘good’ for caring. The Trust is
committed to increasing the speed of improvement as it continues
its recovery and is clear on the areas where it must improve.

Since the inspection in May 2017 the Trust has undertaken
significant change, including in the following areas:

• Reconfigured its Emergency Operations Centres (EOCs) and
created a new EOC and HQ in Crawley, which provides a better
working environment for staff and improves the consistency of the
services we provide
• Implemented a new Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) system,
which provides a safer system for staff that is reliable and
enables more efficient dispatching of vehicles
• Completely re-designed and implemented a new approach to how
it manages and uses medicines, creating a safer and more robust

Under the leadership of the Trust’s new Chair and Chief
Executive, who both joined the Trust in April of this year, the
Trust has been updating its improvement plan to help ensure all the
shortcomings identified by the CQC are rectified.

Chief Executive Daren Mochrie said: “While I am disappointed
that not enough progress has been made for us to improve our
overall rating, I am confident that progress is being made and that
this will continue. I believe that the pace of improvement has
picked up since the CQC visit in May 2017 but I am very aware, as
is our senior team, that there remains a significant amount of work
to be done.

 “Our updated Improvement Plan focuses on the areas where
we are determined to make major improvements in the months ahead.
We are working with our local commissioners to ensure that we are
funded appropriately and have the right resources to meet the
demand we are facing.
“Right across the Trust, staff are working flat out to ensure the
necessary improvements continue to be made and I am pleased that
staff told inspectors that they feel more positive about the
organisation and that we are heading in the right direction.

“There are some positives to build on. In recent months we have
successfully delivered a number of key projects, including moving
to our new Emergency Operations Centre and HQ at Crawley and
introducing a new Computer Aided Dispatch system. The success of
projects such as these will ensure we are providing the right
foundation for a better service in the future.

Richard Foster, Chair, said: “The Trust Board acknowledges that
not enough progress had been made since the last CQC inspection in
May 2016. During that time there have been a number of changes at
executive and at board-level and the leadership team now in place
is committed to delivering the vigorous improvement programme
already under way”.

The reports are available to view here: