Prime Minister visits SCAS Emergency Operations Centre

South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SCAS) was privileged to host a visit from the MP for West Oxfordshire and Prime Minister David Cameron.

Mr Cameron visited Will Hancock, Chief Executive at South Central’s Bicester headquarters, on Friday 10th Jan, to find out more about SCAS’s plans to integrate the NHS 111 and 999 services, to enable provision of a seamless service to their patients.

Mr Cameron also spent time meeting staff in the busy Emergency Operations Centre (EOC). He was able to observe and appreciate the pressures on staff as they responded to 999 emergency calls and those received via NHS 111. He also experienced at first hand which of their diverse range of resources were dispatched to those emergencies and learnt about the different care pathways that SCAS accesses, depending on the patient’s individual need.

David Cameron at SCAS.  Image (c) South Central Ambulance Service
David Cameron at SCAS [Image (c) South Central Ambulance Service]

He also had the opportunity to talk to call handlers and clinicians in the NHS111 service, learning more about the process for guiding members of the public to the correct course of action for their urgent health need. Staff explained that SCAS is still developing the directory of services, working closely with partners, to ensure patients get assessment, advice and access to the most appropriate care.

Speaking after his visit Mr Cameron said “Clearly the time it takes to respond to a life threatening event is critical and it was helpful to see how this is done in practice and to also hear about changes that are being made to improve the service upon which people rely.

The flooding provides an extremely difficult situation for those affected and I was impressed by what I heard in terms of the work that SCAS have done during this time.”

Chief Executive, Will Hancock said “We were really privileged to have Mr Cameron visit our service this afternoon and were very proud to show him the highly regarded service that we provide. In addition we have had the opportunity to tell him about our successes as well as inform him about the challenges that a modern ambulance service faces on a daily basis and the innovations that we are introducing to find new solutions to these.

His visit is timely, given the extra pressures on us due to flooding, particularly in the Oxfordshire area and we have been working very closely with our many partner agencies to respond to this additional pressure.”