Paul appointed first Consultant Paramedic in the North East

Only eight others in the UK

Paul Fell has been appointed Consultant Paramedic at the North East Ambulance Service, after fighting off national competition for the post.

Jo Baxter, Director of Clinical Care and Patient Safety, said: This is an exciting time for NEAS as the post makes Paul only the ninth consultant paramedic to be created in the UK.

"He will provide clinical leadership to the workforce and will also be responsible for leading on developments in clinical care, inform clinical education, and drive professional development of the paramedic workforce.

"As the most senior paramedic and head of profession for the Trust, the Consultant Paramedic will  be the pinnacle of the career pathway for our paramedics and will ensure that the the organisation delivers the highest standard of clinical care.

"Paul will be an expert practitioner in the Trust with responsibility for clinical leadership and developing clinical supervision for pre-hospital practitioners in our region.

"As the most senior paramedic and head of profession for the Trust, Paul will also oversee research & training & development of paramedics."

Paul, who is currently Head of Clinical Care and Patient Safety, added: "This is an exciting evolution of the paramedic profession in our Trust and gives us the huge opportunity to be innovative. I will be concentrating on clinical leadership in our organisation and being an advocate for the paramedic role within the health service."

Paramedics were introduced in the North East about 25 years ago and this first generation of the profession has moved the perception of the ambulance service from being a transport organisation to a clinical one. Paul sees the new consultant role in developing the next generation of paramedics and their professional standing in the health community.

Only six other ambulance services have so far appointed consultant paramedics: in North West, East Midlands, Wales, Scotland, South East Coast and London.

The research and development team and senior trauma paramedics will report directly to the new consultant paramedic post. This post will also have responsibility for the clinical accountability of paramedics.

Medical director Mr Kyee Han said: "This was a highly competitive process and all of the candidates shortlisted, from across the country, were of a high standard. This new post is an important one around professional leadership and this will be a good role for the paramedic community and a key figure in the development of the profession."

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