It has recently come to our attention that there are plans to move to a single national fleet model.
Just to be clear, the proposed changes, subject to the consultation outcome, would come into force for any new ambulance purchased from 1 April 2019.
To summarise – NHS Improvement are consulting over the standard specification for an emergency DCA. https://engage.improvement.nhs.uk/operational-productivity-comms/english-nhs-ambulance-vehicle-spec/
There is no, one vehicle manufacturer that has been mandated, however they are considering mandating black box technology. They are proposing moving to a van conversion – as they believe they are economically better value and there have been no particular issues raised in services where they use them.
However, if a service wants to deviate from the van conversion they can but they will need to supply evidence to the commissioners.
I would like to point out that NHS Improvement and AACE have collaborated over this piece of work but up to now the unions have not been involved.
I’m sure this will create some interesting debate over the coming weeks. The consultation is open until 1 February 2019 so UNISON’S ambulance occupational group will need to decide how best to respond in the New Year. Our branch will be impacted by this change, so we will be speaking to our organisation and considering a response by our branch and by our members who use them.
The Carter Team have offered to engage with branches and hopefully will be invited to the next UNISON Ambulance Operational Group early next year.
For now, please can you pass this message on and ensure people are aware of the consultation. Please gather views on the impact of these changes and to help us with a response to be collated in the New Year.
PLEASE TAKE PART IN THIS SURVEY (The link is above)