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The St. John Ambulance & Rescue Service (SJARS)

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Tuesday 07 May 2019

Health & Social Care (HSC) is continuing to work closely with the Commandery of St John in Guernsey following the events of last week when St John announced changes to its management structure.

The Commandery informed HSC confidentially in writing on 12th April 2019 regarding the changes being made to the structure of the two operating subsidiaries in Guernsey: St John Ambulance & Rescue Service, and St John Guernsey (Limited By Guarantee). As this letter was provided in the strictest confidence it is a matter for the Commandery to release, or otherwise, the details contained in it.

Assurance was provided to HSC that the changes will raise the prominence and influence of qualified medical practitioners in the St John organisation, and that there will be no discontinuity, or dilution of quality in the services they provide as a result of these changes.

HSC had no involvement in the review undertaken by the UK Priory of St John, nor would it expect to have any involvement in what it understands was essentially an internal matter. Neither has HSC had involvement in the recent changes, other than to support the appointment of two Emergency Department consultants as Medical Advisor and Medical Director to enable the board to engage authoritatively on clinical matters.

HSC's primary concern is the on-going provision of a safe and reliable service through the fulfilment of the terms of its contract with St John. Since we were notified of the changes we have been in regular dialogue with The Commandery.

The President and Chief Secretary met with the new Chairman, Knight Commander and Chief Officer of SJARS following the changes and were further assured about the ability of the service to meet the terms of the contract that has an annual budget of £2.4m.

To date, nothing has arisen that would give us cause for concern but HSC will continue to monitor the situation closely during this period of transition to ensure that the States of Guernsey's interests, and those of the public served are maintained at the highest levels.

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