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Ambulance response times hit annual low

November 28, 2012 3:06 PM

Statistics released today have shown that ambulance response times have fallen for the fifth successive month. The Government's all-Wales target is for 65% of category A (immediately life-threatening) calls to receive an ambulance response time within eight minutes. This target was missed, with only 59.9% of calls in October receiving an ambulance within that time.

Kirsty Williams, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, commented:

"The figures released today have shown that ambulance response rates in October were the lowest they have been this year. We have the slowest ambulance response times in the whole of the UK, yet rather than seeing the service improve, it is in fact getting worse. While ambulance staff are striving for excellence, they are facing immense pressures and having to work with increasingly stretched resources. They need to be able to count on a Welsh government to help them do their job properly. At the moment, that is clearly not happening.

"Last month the Welsh Liberal Democrats exposed that the Welsh Ambulance Service budget had not been set a full six months into the financial year. The Welsh Labour Government had effectively forced the Ambulance Trust into an impossible position. It is clear that Wales is suffering the consequences of having a Welsh Labour Government that is totally inept at handling our NHS.

"In the Welsh Liberal Democrat ambulance debate held earlier this month, the Health Minister announced there will be a review into the performance of the ambulance service. This will be the ninth review in six years - we've seen enough reviews, what we want to see is improvement."