THE keys for a new ambulance base in Portsmouth are due to be handed over next week.
South Central Ambulance Service (Scas) should be given control of its new South East Hampshire Resource Centre, which has been built in Northarbour Road, Cosham, Portsmouth, on Monday.
At Portsmouth City Council’s health, overview and scrutiny panel, Neil Cook, head of operations at Scas, gave an update on the hub.
He said: ‘We are nearing completion now.
‘We expect the building to be handed over by January 27.
‘After that, we will need about three weeks to check the site and move in all our kit.
‘Once that is completed, the first station to move in will be Gosport.’
As previously reported, once the hub is up and running, stations in Portsmouth, Gosport, Fareham and Havant will move in.
The move had been planned for October last year, but the project was delayed.
‘We want to move the stations in slowly,’ added Mr Cook.
‘We are starting with Gosport to make sure we get everything right on that peninsula.
‘We are working on standby points for ambulances to wait, and the station will be used as a base for staff to use the facilities or have a tea break.
‘If it’s working well, then we can move Fareham, followed by Havant, and then Portsmouth.
‘The standby points are very important to us.’
The last station to move in will be the Portsmouth Ambulance Station, in Eastern Road.
Gosport, Fareham and Havant house about 30 staff, and although all will close as bases, they will remain open as a point for use of facilities and tea breaks.
In Portsmouth, the Eastern Road station holds about 90 staff, and will close completely when people move out.
Councillor Peter Eddis, chairman of the Hosp, asked if the location of standby points would be shared with the public.
Mr Cook said that this would be provided, once they had all been established.