New chief executive, David Eltringham, shares his first reflections from meeting teams across SCAS. David says:
“It’s a great privilege to join SCAS as chief executive. In the first few weeks of my induction, I’ve been getting out seeing the amazing work our teams do and the pride with which they do it. My pride in being part of SCAS is growing with every day and every team I meet.
“I’ve wanted to work in the ambulance service for some time, having seen its importance through leading emergency care in hospitals and working as clinical lead for 111’s predecessor in the West Midlands. SCAS has such an important role to play in helping patients get the right care at the right time; and helping the wider health and care system tackle the challenges we face.
“As a nurse by background, I want to make sure everything we do and every decision we make is focused on providing the best care to patients. Fundamental to that is looking after our staff. Supporting our people and helping them develop will lead to better experiences for patients.
“Seeing first-hand what it’s like for all our teams is essential to me. I’ve been joining crews on ride-outs, observing 111, 999 and Patient Transport calls in our contact centres, meeting with crews at A&E departments and stations, and support teams across the Trust. There are many more teams still to meet, but I’ve had a fantastic welcome already and heard a huge amount of positivity; both for what works well and ideas for further improvements.
“There has clearly been strong progress in addressing the challenges highlighted in last year’s CQC report; and a firm commitment to continue improving. Our improvement programme update for April gives a summary of achievements, which I hope partners will find both interesting and reassuring.
“One of my key priorities will be to create a 10-point plan to reconnect the immediate improvements we’re making with our longer-term strategy. We’ll be developing this in the months ahead and looking to launch a refreshed strategy in the autumn.
“Diaries rapidly fill up, but I’m determined to keep time protected to meet people and talk about the issues affecting us all. That applies to our partners as well as teams across SCAS. I look forward to meeting and working with many of you in the months ahead.”