Ambulance trust called to risk summit

Sue Noyes, chief executive of East Midlands Ambulance Service.
Sue Noyes, chief executive of East Midlands Ambulance Service.

Health chiefs called East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) to a risk summit over concerns about response times and patient care.

The summit was in response to deteriorating response times by EMAS, and followed eight serious incidents being reported by the trust in just three days - including one where an 87-year-old Derbyshire man suffered a cardiac arrest but couldn’t be taken to hospital because crews had lost the keys to the ambulance.

NHS England were also concerned by EMAS’ inability to handle the most serious of calls on October 4, with limited improvement the following two days. On October 6, there was a 38 minute delay, against the eight minute target, to attend an elderly lady with breathing difficulties, who later died.

In response to the summit, EMAS have devised a programme to improve performance. The trust must attend a follow-up summit in the new year.

Sue Noyes, East Midlands Ambulance Service Chief Executive, said: “We have developed a Quality Improvement Programme to remedy where our performance has been below par and we are confident that a renewed approach to implementing this, together with the continued hard work of all at EMAS, will give us the right conditions to improve our organisation over time and allow us to deliver better patient care.”