WORKFORCE: London Ambulance Service chief executive Peter Bradley has announced he is leaving the post to take up a role in New Zealand.

Mr Bradley, who is also the Department of Health’s national director for the ambulance service, has led LAS for 12 years. He will leave after the Olympics and Paralympics to become chief executive of St John for New Zealand, a role that will involve running an ambulance service.

Mr Bradley, who grew up in New Zealand, started his career at St John, a charitable organisation that provides emergency and non-emergency ambulance services for approximately 90 per cent of New Zealand’s population.

The trust was due to submit its foundation trust application to the DH in December last year but is agreeing a revised timetable following two high profile major incidents. The attempted switch over to a new call handling system left the trust relying on pen and paper for 15 hours last June and when union members went on strike in a national dispute over pensions on 30 November the trust had to call in support from the Metropolitan Police.

Reports into both incidents criticised the trust for a lack of planning.

Mr Bradley said: “I feel really privileged and proud to have led the London Ambulance Service over the last 12 years. It is, in my view, the best capital city ambulance service in the world.

“More importantly, I’ve seen the care we provide to Londoners improve significantly; more of our most critically ill and injured patients are surviving, and our patients are having their 999 calls answered and responded to quicker than ever.

“I will be sad to leave, but this opportunity which has come out of the blue brings new and exciting challenges which I’m looking forward to.”