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Welsh Ambulance Service Statement on October 2015's performance figures

TRACY Myhill, Chief Executive of the Welsh Ambulance Service, said: “In October we not only met the all-important 65% target but we surpassed it, which we’re obviously delighted with.

“We’re so thankful for the hard work and persistence of staff – not just those on the road and in our control rooms but those who have worked behind the scenes to implement our new response model, which means patients are now receiving the right care, at the right time, by the right clinician.

“For the year-long pilot, which began on October 1, the eight-minute target will remain for immediately life-threatening calls, i.e. RED calls, like a cardiac arrest, because time really is of the essence for these patients.

“For everything else – including calls in the newly-introduced AMBER category, e.g. chest pain, and the GREEN category, e.g. fainting – we’re now measured on the quality and appropriateness of the care we deliver.

“We took 38,155 calls in October, up by more than 1,700 calls from the previous month and more than 1,400 calls from the same period last year.

“We reached 68.7 per cent of RED calls – of which there were more than 1,800 – within eight minutes, and the average response time for a RED call was five minutes and 44 seconds, which is really encouraging.

“We’re working hard to get underneath the RED calls we didn’t quite reach in eight minutes to understand what we can do to improve even further.

“We know we have more to do, but I think we’ve made a solid start and really are committed to learning and improving from this pilot as we move forward.

“We’re thankful during this important period for your feedback – when we've got it right and where we could have certainly done better – and would encourage anyone who wants to share their experience at the hands of the Welsh Ambulance Service to get in touch.

“Last week we heard from Sam Haywood, who had this praise for a Tredegar paramedic: ‘He was professional and attentive and had a smile to boot. A real credit to WAS (the Welsh Ambulance Service) and the NHS as a whole. Truly a shining example of what a care giver can be.’

“We also heard from Aberaeron mum Sara Griffiths, who paid tribute to call handler Declan Hold for helping her to deliver baby Max over the telephone – click here if you haven’t already read that story.

“As we enter the busy winter period, we remind the public to keep well and Choose Well.

“If you’re ill or injured but it’s not life-threatening, contact your GP or GP Out of Hours Service, call NHS Direct Wales or visit your nearest pharmacy for advice and information.

“If you’ve got a sprain, a broken bone, a minor burn or a bite, go to your nearest Minor Injuries Unit, where there’s no need for an appointment.

“Please only call 999 if you’re seriously ill or injured, or your life is at risk.”