The region's ambulance service is paying out more than £49,000 in a wrongful dismissal case after a paramedic was assaulted by an intoxicated 14-year-old patient.

Following an employment tribunal, the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust have been ordered to pay the sum of £49,314.66 to one of their former paramedics.

Peter Edwards, 60, who worked as a senior paramedic for the Trust for 18 years, was dismissed for "gross misconduct for physically assaulting a patient" in February 2022.

While working a night shift in August 2021, Mr Edwards attended a call involving a 14-year-old male patient who was reported to have consumed excess alcohol.

While securing the patient to a trolley across his chest in order to take him to West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds, Mr Edwards was struck on the upper lip and nose.

The employment tribunal heard that the claimant's "instantaneous reflex reaction" was to "protect himself from further blows from the patient".

Mr Edwards was suspended pending an investigation and dismissed on the grounds that he had "abused his position of trust and his professional boundaries as an employee".

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After his dismissal, a subsequent appeal was upheld and Mr Edwards took the matter to an employment tribunal who ruled it a "wrongful dismissal" compunded by the "obvious procedural unfairness of not allowing the claimant more notice" of the attendance of a testimonial witness.

An East of England Ambulance Service spokesman said: “We respect the outcome of the Employment Tribunal which was not in agreement with our decision to dismiss the now ex-employee.  

“We have decided not to appeal the outcome after reflecting on the findings and have identified some lessons to be learned procedurally.   

“The safety of our patients is a top priority for the Trust and every allegation against a staff member around professional conduct with patients is investigated thoroughly.”