Dear residents,

We would like to take the opportunity to provide an update on the Purbeck Rapid Response Vehicle (RRV) – also known as the Purbeck/Swanage Ambulance Car.

As many of you will know, we have been exploring the views of local people about the service through our ongoing listening exercise.  Throughout this time funding for the car has continued and has not been reduced.

We started this listening exercise some time ago; but have not been able to move forward earlier due to the NHS’ national and local pressures, priorities to sustain the COVID-19 response, the roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccination programme across Dorset and the recovery of services.

Due to this, it has taken us a little longer than we had hoped to progress our listening activities, where we received valuable local feedback, insight and opinion regarding ongoing provision of the Purbeck Car.

We’d like to thank people for their patience and understanding.

We know how important it is to the communities of Purbeck and Swanage to have reassurance around the ongoing provision of healthcare services in the area.

Following our listening exercise, we can confirm that the service will remain as a 24/7 car and will continue to provide a valuable service.

As previously stated, SWASFT, along with all health and social care providers, are continuing to be impacted by the inevitable increases of staff absences as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We would like to provide assurances to the communities that we are working hard to address this and to improve the staffing of the car moving forward.

NHS Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) would like to thank everyone who has been involved, along with those who have given their views.

Thank you,

Sue Sutton, Programme Director Urgent & Emergency Care – NHS Dorset CCG
Nick Reynolds, County Commander, South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust