Big increase in 999 ambulance calls dealt with on phone

The number of 999 calls to the ambulance service which are dealt with on the phone has dramatically increased during the past three years.


Ambulance managers are trying to reduce the number of times that paramedics are sent out unnecessarily.


In 2010, the number of 999 calls in the South West were resolved on the phone was 4,400. This figure rose to 16,000 last year.


Paul Greatorix from South West Ambulance Trust, said nearly half of the calls (43%) are regarded as "see and treat" which means a visit from a clinician and treated at the scene without being taken to hospital. These patients may be referred to a GP. About ten per cent of calls are classed as "hear and treat" patients are dealt with over the phone.


Nearly half of the calls (47%) are classed as "see and convey" which means patients are taken to hospital for further treatment.


Source: The Bristol Post. August 2013.


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