EMAS shows improvements in call-out times, but still misses targets

Ambulance waiting times are improving, bosses say.

Ambulance waiting times are improving, bosses say.

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The ambulance service says it is now reaching more 999 calls within its eight-minute target time than in previous years, but is still falling short of its targets.

The 2014/2015 performance figures for East Midland Ambulance Service (EMAS) show it now sits mid-table compared to services around the country, which ambulance chief, Sue Noyes, says proves that they are moving in the right direction.

Mrs Noyes, who was appointed substantive chief executive last month, said: “I am very proud of the excellent work of our staff, volunteers and our partners, it’s clear we are an improving service and our performance results are proof of the progress made.

“Whilst frontline staff deal with 999 calls day in and day out and know how important it is to arrive as fast as possible, they’re always reminding us that the quality of clinical care they provide is as important as how quickly they arrive.

“During 2014/15, EMAS was one of the top performing services for our response to a type of heart attack caused by a prolonged blockage of blood supply to the heart.

“We successfully provided high quality clinical care at the scene and then ensured the majority of patients arrived at a specialist cardiac unit within 150 minutes of us receiving the initial call for help.

“This is just one example of how the clinical skills of our staff save lives,” she added.

“They’re all dedicated, highly-trained and experienced practitioners, even though on some occasions, they’re not able to arrive within the eight-minute target time due to challenges such as the distance they have to travel, traffic jams

and bad weather

“Despite these challenges, we’re now only seconds away from achieving the time standards. If the target arrival time was 8 minutes and 30 seconds, we would have hit the standard in 2014/2015.

“We still have big challenges to face but have strong plans in place to address them. For example, we are currently recruiting and training 200 more frontline staff and investing £3.9million in our fleet. Both of these actions will allow us to respond to emergencies faster.

“Together with the continued backing of our commissioners and stakeholders, and the support and tremendous hard work of all our colleagues, I’m confident EMAS will continue to move in the right direction.

“Thank you to our staff and volunteers for their continued support and for providing the best possible care to our patients across the East Midlands.”