You are here

Southern Medical Services (2008) Limited


Inspection carried out on 04 October 2017

During a routine inspection

Southern Medical Services (2008) Limited is an independent ambulance service operated by Linda Rooke. Linda is a qualified nurse with a background in accident and emergency nursing. The service is based in Burgess Hill, West Sussex. They provide event cover for domestic and international cricket matches and transport any patients who need more comprehensive medical treatment to hospital. They have two ambulances.

The service also provides event cover for the following:

  • Premier Football Team

  • Equestrian events: International Horse Trials, Pony Clubs, Point to Points

  • Festivals, Fetes, Parades, Music Events

The service has a bank of trained nurses, paramedics and emergency medical technicians to cover their events. Four named paramedics are responsible for the transfer of patients to hospital. Southern Medical Services (2008) Limited, also has a doctor with a background in accident and emergency medicine.

In England, the law makes event organisers responsible for ensuring safety at events is maintained, which means event medical cover comes under the remit of the Health and Safety Executive. During the inspection, we reviewed evidence and made our judgements on the eight patient journeys to hospital in the twelve months prior to the inspection only.

We inspected the emergency and urgent care service, which is regulated by CQC.

We inspected this service using our comprehensive inspection methodology. We carried out an announced inspection on 4 October 2017.

To get to the heart of patients’ experiences of care and treatment, we ask the same five questions of all services: are they safe, effective, caring, responsive to people's needs, and well-led?

Throughout the inspection, we took account of what people told us and how the provider understood and complied with the Mental Capacity Act 2005.

Services we do not rate

We regulate independent ambulance services but we do not currently have a legal duty to rate them. We highlight good practice and issues that service providers need to improve and take regulatory action as necessary.

We found the following areas of good practice:

  • Equipment was available and appropriately serviced and maintained. The ambulances had received appropriate checks.

  • Vehicles were well maintained and checked at before the start of the shift.

  • Staff had a good understanding of safeguarding and what constituted abuse.

  • Policies and procedures were in place for cleaning and deep cleaning ambulances. The ambulance we viewed was visibly clean and the manager told us staff followed infection control procedures, to be bare below the elbow and use personal protective equipment.

  • Patient records were held securely and included appropriate information.

  • Staffing levels were sufficient to meet patient needs.

  • Staff had been trained in the Mental Capacity Act, 2005 and demonstrated a good understanding of consent.

  • Staff told us they respected the needs of patients, promoted their well-being and respected their individual needs.

  • Staff we spoke with were passionate about their roles and providing excellent care.

  • We saw information about how to make a complaint was available in the vehicle we inspected.

  • The culture amongst the staff we spoke with was good, and they liked working for the service. The approach of staff was to provide person-centred care.

  • Staff told us they felt supported by the managers who they felt were approachable and accessible should they require any advice.

However, we also found the following issues that the service provider should do:

  • Although the registered manager dealt with incidents and complaints as they occurred, the provider should consider having an overview via a register of incidents and complaints.

  • The provider should regularly monitor and report on quality issues within the service.

Name of signatory

Mary Cridge, Head of Hospital Inspection, on behalf of the Chief Inspector of Hospitals

Inspection carried out on 29 March 2013

During a routine inspection

Southern Medical Services (2008) Limited provided a well organised and proficient service. We were unable to speak directly with people using the sevice thus we viewed comment cards. People who had received treatment were complementary and had said,"Everyone was friendly, helpful, quick thinking and showed genuine concern." The staff we spoke with were dedicated and caring.

The staff we spoke with were knowledgeable about safeguarding issues and procedures. This meant that people could be assured that they would be safe.

There were appropriate recruitment procedures in place which ensured that people received care from suitably skilled and qualified staff. Quality monitoring systems were in operation to review the service and make improvements where necessary.There had not been any complaints since 2001, prior to being registered with the Care Quality Commission, which demonstrated that people were content with the care and treatment received.