West Midlands Ambulance Service

Ambulance service 'to rely less' on fast cars

Local Democracy Reporting Service

West Midlands Ambulance Service says it's going to be relying less on motorbikes and response cars and more on traditional ambulances in the future.

Mark Docherty, its executive director of clinical commissioning, said: “We invested a lot in response cars, a lot of motorcycles and even bicycles. But what we found was that it was all well and good getting a paramedic there, but what do they then do with the patient?"

Ambulance
BBC

Mr Docherty said he also wanted more defibrillators "on every street corner", so that if someone suffered a cardiac arrest, they could get help quickly.

Meeting ambulance target in county 'would cost £45m'

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Andrew Morris

An ambulance service has said the chances of meeting response times for the most critically injured patients in a county would cost an extra £45m a year.

Side of an ambulance
BBC

West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) currently has 38 vehicles on the road in Shropshire.

In England, ambulance services are expected to reach patients within an average of seven minutes but, in the county, the average time was 10 minutes 44 seconds.

At a Shropshire Council health meeting, WMAS spokesman Mark Docherty said it would need another 75 ambulances to meet the target, costing £45m.

He said instead, it wanted to see more people trained in using defibrillators with more of the machines on street corners as "this is going to help save lives more than more ambulances".

Boy hit by ambulance responding to 999 call

A teenage boy suffered potentially serious injuries when he was hit by an ambulance responding to an emergency call.

Ambulance
BBC

It happened in Lichfield Street, Walsall, just after 17:30 on Monday.

The teenager was treated at the scene before being airlifted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.

No-one in the ambulance was injured, though they were badly shaken.

The ambulance service will be working with collision investigators to establish what happened, the West Midlands trust said.

Bid to cut hospital waits by driving patients further

BBC Shropshire

Patients who need to be taken to hospital by ambulance may end up being driven to hospitals further away in order to be seen more quickly.

It's part of changes that West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) has introduced to try to free up vehicles.

Side of an ambulance
BBC

The NHS says acute hospital trusts should admit patients within 15 minutes of an ambulance arriving at A&E. That can take longer if the hospital is busy.

WMAS says patients may now not be taken to their nearest site if their condition allows them to be taken to a less busy one.

All that we're doing really is increasing the amount of patients that we move around slightly just to improve that overall experience and try and present the patient to where their condition can be treated in the quickest, fastest, most appropriate time."

Jeremy BrownWest Midlands Ambulance Service

Ambulance bosses want meeting over A&E delays

West Midlands Ambulance Service has written to the trust that runs Telford hospital to express concern over handover times.

The note, pictured in the Shropshire Star, was posted on a board at the Princess Royal in Telford on 4 March, asking crews to keep patients in the back of their ambulance until A&E staff were ready for them.

PRH A&E
BBC

The ambulance service has asked for a meeting over the delays, saying it wants them to be reduced.

The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital Trust said it was working to improve handover times, and that demand at the Telford accident and emergency department on 4 March was "significant", adding the note in the corridor "is not normal procedure and was not in place for very long”.

Rural challenges for West Midlands ambulances

The West Midlands Ambulance Service says it faces a number of challenges in getting to patients in rural areas.

Figures released this morning show they face longer waits than those in towns and cities, with patients in towns like Kington in Herefordshire having an average wait of 19 minutes and those in Broadway in Worcestershire 17 minutes.

Ambulance
BBC

WMAS director Mark Docherty said: "Clearly it is more difficult to get to rural areas, for a whole variety of reasons. They're spread out, there are relatively small populations, the roads are not necessarily fast roads that go into these villages."

But he went on to say that the rural isolation was also a reason many people chose to live in these areas in the first place.