Construction work has started on a new multi-purpose ambulance, 999, and NHS 11 centre, located in Gillingham.
The centre will be the responsibility of South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) and was granted planning permission in 2020.
The centre will be home to a new ‘Make Ready’ centre, which will see vehicle maintenance and preparation facilities brought together under one roof, alongside 999 and 111 call centre operations. The new centre is part of South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust’s wider strategy to provide integrated care.
SECAmb Executive Director of Operations, Emma Williams, said: “It’s really great that building work is now underway on this important development for SECAmb. Our current building at Coxheath is outdated and not adequate for our requirements. Having operations centres for 999 and 111 under one roof will ensure we further optimise functions between the services.
“The new centre provides us with greater capacity, means we can improve the ratio of 999 call taking across our two EOCs and will bring local recruitment opportunities for people across both 999 and 111 services.
“Not only is our Make Ready system more efficient but the new building will also provide staff with access to modern facilities for training. We understand any change has an impact on staff and we will continue to fully engage with everyone affected ahead of the move next year.”
The centre is expected to be fully operational in the autumn of 2022.