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8:00am Saturday 11th August 2012 in Letters
I WISH to address concerns regarding the selling of Evesham’s ambulance station as reported by your newspaper last week.
One omission from the report was the fact that there will be a new, replacement ambulance station in its place. The principle behind the selling of the building and the creation of fleet hubs in Worcester and Bromsgrove is to cut down on the ambulance service’s historic inefficiencies and wastage and channel that money into increasing ambulance cover.
The hubs will better manage the fleet (keeping to a servicing schedule resulting in fewer breakdowns and fewer costly repairs) and the supplies and equipment within them (resulting in less wastage and, again, fewer breakdowns).
The building in Evesham, essentially a staff rest area with parking, is no longer suitable as a modern ambulance station and is costing £38,000 a year in rates and utility bills alone.
For a fraction of that cost, we can accommodate our staff and vehicles somewhere else within the town and the money saved will be spent on additional ambulance cover for you.
It is better to invest our money wisely not in bricks and mortar, but in our staff, more of whom are being upskilled to paramedic or advanced paramedic level.
The latter particularly will be better equipped to deal with minor illness and injuries that historically would have involved a trip to A&E. Five of them will work in Evesham as community paramedics, providing round-the-clock, dedicated cover; something the town has not had before. It will enhance cover in the town. I urge you not to be concerned that the old station will be sold. Stations don’t save lives, it is the men and women in our frontline cars and ambulances that do.
Michelle Brotherton, general manager, West Mercia area of West Midlands Ambulance Service