AMBULANCE services around England currently have 2,000 vacancies for paramedic roles – but none of them are in the West Midlands.

The regional chief praised the service’s recruitment programme, which has kept their rosters fully-staffed and will see at least 350 new paramedics join throughout 2018-19.

West Midlands Ambulance Service CEO Anthony Marsh also pointed out that there is a paramedic on every ambulance in the trust area.

He said: “In some others it’s as low as 35 per cent. To put that another way, two out of three patients aren’t treated on the ambulance by a registered paramedic in those places. But not here.”

In his report, Mr Marsh wrote that 469 frontline emergency staff were recruited last year, including 340 student paramedics and 80 graduated.

Throughout 2019-20, WMAS plans to recruit a further 266 students and at least 90 newly-qualified paramedics.

He said: “I think that there are a lot of lessons that can be learned in other parts of the NHS in terms of the way we have approached the workforce in this ambulance service.

“There are 2,000 paramedic vacancies across England – none in this agency.”

He added the fleet will be boosted the arrival of 94 new ambulances in 2019-20, at a cost of £14million, maintaining its position of having the most modern fleet out of England’s 11 ambulance services.

“This key investment ensures staff and patient experience the best working and care environment possible,” Mr Marsh told the West Midlands Ambulance Service University NHS Foundation Trust board of directors.

He added that WMAS – which covers Birmingham, the Black Country, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire – had given more than 80 per cent of its patient-facing staff received the flu vaccine in 2018, and 73 per cent of other staff.