Area Director for Lancashire North West Ambulance Service Matt Cooper promises to be winter ready with the help of £23 million pounds
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Matt Cooper, who relocated to Preston last year from Scotland and is responsible for leading the NHS team who deliver the ambulances across Lancashire, has said he will use additional funding amounting to around £23 million pounds to focus on deploying more ambulances, employing more staff and looking after their mental health and well-being.
Speaking to the Post on a challenging year, he said: “The winter of 2022 was really difficult for the whole of health and social care and particularly for the ambulance service and you’ll be aware of some of the challenges that we were faced with such as how long it took us to respond to some patients.
“This year the North West Ambulance Service has been allocated around £23 million pounds of additional funding to help us to respond to calls as we head into the winter. That money will allow us to put additional ambulances on the road across Lancashire, additional clinicians into our call centres so that when you ring 999 instead of having to send an ambulance we may be able to deal with a person’s needs directly over the telephone and also to support the welfare of our staff as we head into the winter period.”
Urging people to only call for an ambulance if desperately needed, he added: “I really want to push this message and that if you are unsure then call 111 online at 111.nhs.uk for guidance. It’s been a really difficult past year, but this year we are better equipped and primed to deal with winter.”