Aldous provides feedback on challenges to ambulance service

Waveney MP Peter Aldous has written to the East of England Ambulance Trust with his feedback and findings following two evenings spent with crews working from the Waveney Depot.

Aldous has stepped up his investigation of the reasons behind delays to ambulance services in Waveney over recent months, working with the East of England Trust, the areas hospitals and ambulance crews to ensure Waveney residents get the best possible emergency services.

Mr Aldous wrote to the Trust after joining ambulance crews from the Waveney Depot at Gorleston at work on 1st and 7th December when he sought to find out more about the operation of the service.

Mr Aldous notes that a significant factor behind the delays in ambulances arriving at emergency calls has been hand-over times at district and general hospitals. Significant improvements have been made at the James Paget Hospital and Peter is visiting the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital in January to discuss how the situation can be improved there.

A second important reason for delays is an inappropriate use of the ambulance service by patients who should either be contacting their GP during working hours or contacting the Out of Hours Service. This situation is exacerbated by the Out of Hours Service referring patients on to the Ambulance Service whose needs they should be able to address.
Mr Aldous’ other observations from his visit included:

  • A greater strain on the ambulance service has resulted from an increase in demand due to an increasingly ageing population.
  • Calls made to 111 could put more pressure on the service.
  • Some calls are wrongly diverted to the ambulance service by the out of hours doctors service, thereby adding further pressure; a review of this service would best establish whether it is properly fulfilling its role.
  • Rapid response vehicles should complement ambulances rather than replace them to ensure that the service is patient driven rather than target focussed.

Mr Aldous has requested a meeting to discuss these issues.

In October, Mr Aldous previously wrote to and met with Dr Pamela Chrispin to express his concerns and called on the service to publish performance information which they have now agreed to do from February. He believes that this will serve an important role in identifying areas in East Anglia where resources can be better directed.

Mr Aldous said:
“Having seen at first-hand the challenges facing the service and heard the views of crews from the Waveney Depot, I now have a better understanding of the challenges that the Trust faces. I look forward to working with Andrew Morgan the interim Chief Executive and other staff to ensure that Waveney has an efficient ambulance service with improved response times.”

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Peter holds regular surgeries at various locations in the constituency. Please call 01502 586568 to make an appointment.

Next Surgeries - 2018: 
Lowestoft, Wednesday 8th August



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