News

03.11.2015

Healthwatch East Sussex press release – South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust

On 29th October 2015, Healthwatch East Sussex was informed by Monitor that it would be taking enforcement action against South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb), under the Health and Social Care Act 2012. This was due to concerns about how the Trust managed a project to change standard operating procedures for some calls to the NHS 111 service which were transferred to the NHS 999 service.

This notification was followed by a stakeholder briefing from SECAmb, which outlined the Trust’s response to Monitor.

Responding to the information, Julie Fitzgerald, Director of Healthwatch East Sussex, said;

“I am concerned to read this project is likely to have had safety implications for patients, and the fact Monitor has decided to take this formal action, is a further indication of the seriousness of the situation.

Within the enforcement undertakings issued by Monitor, SECAmb has agreed to commission a forensic review of the circumstances surrounding the project. This includes a review of its governance and the impact of the project on patients. As the local health and social care consumer champion for people in East Sussex, we believe local Healthwatch should play a key role in this review, most notably on the impact on patients and their families”.

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