CONCERNS over the time it took for an ambulance to arrive in Hedon following a road traffic collision on New Road, has prompted the Save Our Local NHS campaign to visit the town.
Lyn Longbottom, the Chair of the Save Our NHS group said on Wednesday: “After the accident last Sunday, and the length of time it took for an ambulance to arrive, we thought it important to make people aware that our local NHS is under attack. Waiting longer for an ambulance is just one example of how the NHS is being affected by Government cuts. Ambulance queues are up by 50 per cent.”
Sarah Rommell, who is also an independent Hedon Town Councillor, was supporting the non-party political campaign and helping to collect signatures on a Save Our NHS petition. Sarah said: “Waiting 35-40 minutes for an ambulance to arrive is too long. On Sunday I rang for an ambulance after the accident on New Road and the call assistant seemed to be reading from a script. It seemed to take forever to make the call and then for the ambulance to arrive.”
The target that the Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS) aims towards, is to reach emergencies within 8 minutes in 75% of all cases. The Holderness Gazette this week reports that YAS claims that the incident was attended in 23 minutes; the YAS spokesperson said based on the information from the caller, this call was not categorised as being immediately life-threatening and therefore did not require an eight minute response.
Lyn Longbottom, who has worked in the NHS for 40 years, was also concerned about the deskilling of ambulance crews. “Emergency Care Assistants are increasingly being used to staff ambulances rather than fully trained paramedics. The assistants, who are not properly qualified paramedics, are being used on calls instead of paramedics due to a lack of resources. The trade union Unite has spoken up on this issue but has been de-recognised by the local ambulance service.”
The Save Our NHS campaign will in Hedon Market Place collecting signatures on the petition on Wednesday 21st August 2013 from 10:30am – 1:00pm.