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Labour’s ambulance target missed again

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The Welsh Labour government has missed its target for responding to immediately life-threatening 999 calls - AGAIN.

Just over half of emergency ‘category A’ calls had a response on the scene within eight minutes in July 2014. The latest figure is worse than that for the same time in 2013.

Welsh Labour has the UK’s lowest target for immediately life-threatening ambulance calls, at just 65% receiving a response within eight minutes. Even this lower target has only been met once in the past two years.

Ambulance response times in the past three months from May to July 2014 have been worse than those during the severe winter of 2012-13, which saw weeks of heavy snow fall across many parts of Wales.

Darren Millar AM, Shadow Minister for Health, said, “Labour’s ambulance response time target – despite being the lowest target in the UK – has been missed again.

“Labour has only met its target once in the past two years and during this summer barely half of ambulances have responded to an immediately life-threatening callout within eight minutes. This simply isn’t good enough.

“An immediate medical response to a heart attack, stroke or serious accident can make the difference between life and death.

“Patients and their families must have confidence that in an emergency, they can dial 999 and will receive a very swift response, but under Labour, this is not the case.

“Labour’s legacy of record-breaking NHS budget cuts has led to bed blocking, full A&E units and delayed hospital transfers, which have put added pressure on the ambulance service, while Labour’s agenda of centralising services is making matters even worse.

“Instead of concentrating on scrapping targets and limiting accountability, Labour Ministers should begin to address the problems in emergency care in the Welsh NHS and reverse their record-breaking cuts to the NHS budget.”

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