Ambulance Service Treats More Patients Quicker than ever before

Thursday, 18 June, 2009

Commenting on the release of the ambulance performance figures by the Information Centre today, Heather Strawbridge, Chair of the Ambulance Service Network said:

"Ambulance services made huge improvements last year, reaching more patients within 8 minutes than in 2007/08. This is at a time when 7.48 million people called 999 (an increase of 3.5% over last year) with 6.15 million calls resulting in an emergency response arriving at the incident, this is the first time we have passed the 6 million mark and equivalent to one in ten of the population.

"This is the first year Ambulance Trusts have had to meet the 'call connect' target. This is the toughest ambulance response target in the world and has been made even tougher in the context of the coldest winter since 1995."

Mrs Strawbridge added: "Response times aren't the only indicator of the quality of care being provided by ambulance services.

"For example, London Ambulance Service has doubled the number of patients who have had a cardiac arrest, been resuscitated by a paramedic, taken to hospital and then successfully discharged. Ambulance Services have also treated more patients in the community and at home, rather than taking them to A&E.

"Ambulance Trusts are determined to reach patients as quickly as possible. However, the Government should judge the quality of care being provided by ambulance services according to patients clinical outcomes and experiences, not just response times"

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