Campaigners Fighting For Better Ambulance Service in Littleport
PUBLISHED: 10:03 07 April 2010 | UPDATED: 13:18 02 June 2010
CAMPAIGNERS are fighting for a better ambulance service for Littleport, after discovering that just 40 per cent of critically ill patients are being reached within eight minutes of an emergency call being made. Response figures obtained by the Ely Standar
CAMPAIGNERS are fighting for a better ambulance service for Littleport, after discovering that just 40 per cent of critically ill patients are being reached within eight minutes of an emergency call being made.
Response figures obtained by the Ely Standard show that the service in Littleport has deteriorated annually over the last three years- while corresponding figures for Ely and Soham show a marked improvement.
Debra Jordan, who is jointly leading a campaign to try and improve the Littleport service, told the Ely Standard: "What concerns me is when is this going to stop? How far are they prepared to let the level fall before action is taken?
"Category A8 calls are not just broken legs they are life threatening calls where the seconds and minutes can make the difference between life and death.
"I asked the service at a meeting we had with them, if they were satisfied with the 40 per cent figure and they said 'no'. How then, can they expect the public to be satisfied with it if they aren't?"
Figures show that of the 263 calls received by the East of England Ambulance Service (EEAS) from Littleport that were deemed category A8 - the most critical level - in the year 2009/10 to February, just 40.68 per cent of patients were reached within eight minutes of a call being made.
By comparison, 74.93 per cent of critical calls were reached within eight minutes in Ely, and 61 per cent were reached in Soham within the target time. Both the figures for Ely and Soham represent year on year improvements from 2007/08 and 2008/09.
Littleport's performance meanwhile, has fallen during the same period, and campaigners claim that the village is receiving an inferior service because EEAS is focusing all its resources in Cambridge.
Louise Brighton, who is also at the forefront of the campaign, said: "It has taken us a long time to get these figures and as far as we are concerned, they aren't good.
"We feel like we are being sacrificed because we are a rural area and it is not good enough, we pay the same taxes as everybody else so we should be getting the same service."
District councillor for Littleport, Fred Brown, said: "I think these figures demonstrate that the service we used to have is dearly needed again, and I think it also shows that we need more openness from the ambulance service.
"We have tried to get help with specific figures but nobody has been prepared to give us the information we have been looking for."
Karl Edwards, general manager for the East of England Ambulance Service (EEAS) in Suffolk, said: "We have increased resources for Littleport, Ely and Soham in the past year and we continually strive to deliver the highest standard of patient care possible for the benefit of the whole community. We have recently met with key figures in the Littleport campaign as well as local residents to address concerns raised and to communicate the fact that we have improved cover for their area.