Thinking of joining our Trust? We are proud of the dedicated, caring and enthusiastic staff that it employs that come together every day over a huge geographical area to provide a high quality and responsive service to our patients. South Western Ambulance service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) employs Paramedics, Emergency Care Assistants (ECA) and 999 and 111 call-handlers but we also have many other areas of work, including highly skilled administrative staff and IT experts, as well as trained mechanics and housekeepers, all of which form part of the wider team responsible for delivering our emergency healthcare services to the public.
As the most clinically advanced Trust in the UK, our Paramedics treat more patients on-site without the need to attend an emergency department than any other UK ambulance service.
The Better Paramedic website has been created especially with you in mind, to keep you informed about our current vacancies, how to apply and further information about the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust, as well as an insight as to what it’s really like to work on our team.
Are you an experienced Paramedic? Looking to work where you are able to practise to the highest skill levels, with more autonomy than ever before?
We would love to hear from you and look forward to welcoming you to our team.
Development doesn’t just start and stop at training events, we have developed options available to all staff at all levels across the organisation. From things you can do for yourself, useful guides to help you in your everyday work, hints and tips for applying for jobs, developing a portfolio or preparing for an appraisal, you’ll find it all on the ‘Aspire’ website.
There is no doubt that joining a HART team takes a lot of preparation and training. However it also calls for a range of personal attributes that will enable the team member to operate effectively within this environment.
Some characteristics of HART personnel:
- Work well with others in a team
- Can communicate quickly and freely with others on scene
- Have good physical fitness and stamina
- Can think quickly and are ready to make difficult judgment calls
- Can see themselves undertaking clinical intervention in potentially difficult or extreme situations
- Are flexible and can readily adapt to changing circumstances
- Can remain calm under pressure
- Are mentally and physically resilient.
Specialist Paramedic – Urgent & Emergency Care
More info coming soon
Specialist Paramedic – Critical Care
In order to begin the process of becoming a SWASfT SP-CC it is necessary to secure a training post by passing the SWASfT SP-CC selection process. This includes:
- Assessment Day
As with all SWASfT jobs, the position will be advertised in the Trust Vacancy Bulletin and on NHS Jobs. Here both the personal specification and job description will be found. A streaming process is then used to identify suitable candidates and invites made to a selection day.
All trainee and qualified SP-CCs currently work on Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) Enhanced or Critical Care Teams.
All trainee SP-CCs train as Technical Crew Members via an EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency). This qualifies the SP-CC to work on helicopters and assist the pilot in navigation and aeronautical safety as well as utilising helicopters to assist in the delivery of medical aid to patients.
The EASA Technical Crew Member Course is a one week, pass/fail aviation programme.
Core Skills Training
There are several core skills that an SP-CC must be signed off in before they qualify. These include:
- Autonomous Surgical Skills (including surgical Airway, thoracostomy)
- Supportive Surgical Skills (e.g. Resuscitative Hysterotomy, thoracotomy)
- Procedural skills (e.g. sedation and manipulations)
- Additional Pharmacological capabilities
For many of these skills the trainee will be required to pass competency assessments. For the additional drugs, additional PGDs will need to be taught and learnt. In some circumstances, such as administering ketamine for sedation, a thorough portfolio will need to be submitted evidencing the exposure and capabilities of providing the treatment. It will be a requirement that all existing PGDs will need to be signed off before the clinician can be regarded as fully qualified.
As each of the different skills packages and PGDs are completed, the clinician must update their training records, via the unit Educational Lead and/or Operations Officer who will then inform the Air Operations Training Manager. The Air Operations Training Manager can then update the individuals Enhanced Skills status with the Enhanced Skills Register within SWASFT.
In accordance with the College of Paramedics Career Framework, SP-CC will have to have completed a formal Post Graduate Certificate in Critical Care before they can become qualified. The PG Cert must be from a SWASfT recognised and approved provider.
If a candidate has a similar qualification from a different provider then it may well be deemed acceptable if approved by the Air Operations Management Team.
Much more information and a detailed breakdown can be found on the SWAST intranet page.
If you are an external candidate thinking of moving to SWAST, and you would like a copy of the information on the intranet page, please contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to provide it.
Below are links to Air Operation Charity websites. Feel free to contact them about volunteering or fundraising – but please do not contact the charities to enquire about working as an SP-CC.