An additional £2m of Scottish Government funding is to be invested in the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS) next financial year, to take forward developments to the service that will improve patient care.
The extra funding, for 2015-16, will be used to help the ambulance service deliver their refreshed strategy, Towards 2020: Taking Care to the Patient, that will support the overall vision for the health service to provide more care to patients at home or in the community and help to avoid unnecessary hospital admissions.
To achieve this, more investment will be targeted at developing the clinical skills of the current ambulance service workforce to operate to the full scope of their practice, as well creating new roles with enhanced skill sets.
Health Secretary Shona Robison announced the allocation of this funding, which forms part of the additional health consequentials confirmed by the Deputy First Minister in October.
Ms Robison said: “The Scottish Ambulance Service play a vital role in the delivery of NHS care for patients, often being the first to attend to a patient who is unwell. They have a key part to play in this Government’s vision for a health service that works around the needs of a patient and delivers the right care, in the right place, at the right time.
“That is why we are supporting the vision set out in this strategy with this additional funding which will help accelerate the pace of change and mean patients will start to benefit sooner. I know how committed and dedicated ambulance staff are to delivering high quality patient care day in and day out, and it is important we ensure they are equipped with the appropriate skills, training and clinical support to be able to deliver more care in the community.
“Our vision for a health service that meets the changing needs of our population, also needs our local services to evolve. With this vision, and investment, the ambulance service will be better prepared to meet the needs and the challenges of the future, working with local services.”