South East Coast
Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) has been issued
with a warning notice by health regulators, The Care Quality
Commission (CQC).

Following a CQC full inspection held at the beginning of
May, the CQC has called on the Trust to make significant
improvements to a number of systems and processes which are not
operating effectively as well as adequately managing NHS111 calls
in a timely manner.

The Trust now has until September to address
the immediate concerns highlighted by the CQC before a full report
will be published later in the year.

Efforts to address the issues highlighted by
the CQC are already underway with an action plan developed which
will be tracked by the Trust’s Executive Team and Board.

Actions include:

  • Improve operational performance including increasing the number
    of staff deployed to provide patient care
  • Implement a new asset register for clinical equipment
  • Ensure medicines practice are understood and operated
    appropriately by staff
  • Look to establish a new patient safety and quality director
    role to bring together all aspects of patient safety,
    safeguarding  and patient experience to ensure joined patient
    safety reporting mechanisms and clear identification and
    communication of learning
  • Increase staff recruitment in NHS 111 with the aim of
    performing against a new improvement trajectory agreed with service


Acting Chief Executive of SECAmb, Geraint
Davies said: “The Trust is sorry for not providing the service that
the communities we serve should expect and deserve.

“Along with the rest of the Trust’s executive
team, our priority now is to focus on addressing the issues which
the CQC has highlighted.

“We know that there is a lot that the Trust
needs to do to improve compliance with a number of systems and
processes to ensure the safety of our patients. 

“Following the inspection, we have been
working hard to address the issues raised and will continue to do
so over the coming months.  My aim is to restore public
confidence and faith in our service.”

SECAmb’s Interim Chairman, Sir Peter Dixon
said: “There have been some serious failings which we will need to
address quickly.

“When the full CQC report is published, we
will ensure that the public are provided with an update on the
progress made.”