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999 response time target missed again

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: May 30, 2014

By Amy Downward / amy.downward@swwmedia.co.uk / @Amy_SWalesPost

Welsh ambulances have missed a target response time for the 21st time in 22 months.

Welsh ambulances have missed a target response time for the 21st time in 22 months.

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WELSH ambulances have missed their response time target for the most urgent calls for the 21st time in 22 months.

The latest figures released by the Welsh Government show there were 35,192 emergency calls in April.

The figures also revealed only 56.7 per cent of ambulances got to "category A" calls — for cases like heart attacks or suspected strokes — within eight minutes. The stats showed 67.3 per cent arrived within 10 minutes, 83.3 per cent within 15 minutes, 91.4 per cent within 20 minutes and 97.3 per cent within 30 minutes.

The target is for 65 per cent of ambulances in Wales to reach the patient within eight minutes.

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In Swansea the target was just missed with 64 per cent of ambulances arriving at the scene within eight minutes. This figure was slightly higher in Neath Port Talbot at 64.5 per cent.

There were a total of 2,325 calls to the ambulances service in the Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board in April.

Of these calls 1,077 were in the Swansea area and 694 in Neath Port Talbot.

Kirsty Williams, leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, said: "When the figures were at a record low in February, the health minister blamed the weather.

"Now they are less than 4 per cent higher, what excuse can he use this time?

"Is this the level Welsh people can expect from this Labour government from now on? Welsh Paramedics are working tirelessly and are doing the best they can.

"However, they are telling me that they are spending so much time waiting outside hospitals that they are not able to be out where they should be, on the roads saving lives.

"Fast ambulance responses mean the difference between life and death. It is not right or fair that people in Wales have to accept a slower response than patients across the border."

A Welsh Government spokesman said: "These figures are disappointing. While they show an improvement in performance over the month, we expect health boards to work closely with the ambulance service to ensure patients receive the care they require when they need it."

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3 comments

  • williamwaun  |  May 31 2014, 8:07PM

    They will never hit the target with Labour running the health service. Why have ambulance crew got to queue up in corridors for hours, while people could die waiting for an ambulance.

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  • siarad2  |  May 31 2014, 7:55PM

    When you get inside Morriston there's a large trolley-park, must be over 20 & freezingly cold too, where you wait for hours

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  • Zoomer  |  May 31 2014, 11:16AM

    Ambulances miss their targets, because they're all "parked up" outside A & E. The A & E departments' keep the ambulances there, because they don't have the staff nor beds to accommodate the new patients, which in turn affects the A & E departments' own targets. The person who needs to bang heads together and sort this out is the Welsh Health Minister. He is in charge of both the ambulance service, and the hospitals. The present situation is stupid beyond belief !

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