Ambulance response data released under the new targeting system leaves us “in the dark” regarding the performance of the vast majority of emergency calls, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have said.
Under the new system implemented by Labour Ministers, targets are only applied to calls categorized as ‘red’. Less urgent ‘amber’ and ‘green’ calls (95% of all calls according to the data) are not subject to any targeting, nor is any performance data published on these calls.
The Welsh Liberal Democrats have also expressed concerns that, although the new targets are considered to be easier to meet, the 65% threshold still hasn’t been met in three health board areas – Hywel Dda, Cwm Taf and Powys.
Kirsty Williams AM, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, said:
“This new targeting regime may make life easier for Labour Ministers, giving them one less negative headline every month, but in reality people are being left in the dark as to how well their ambulance service is actually performing.
“The simple fact is that we know absolutely nothing about 95% of October’s ambulance calls and how quickly they arrived. A rugby player with a broken leg, or an older person fallen down the stairs, could be waiting for hours upon hours, and we would have no idea.
“Even if targets aren’t applied to these less urgent calls, at the very least we should be able to see how quickly they’re responded to. People have the right to hold their Ministers to account, but this new regime amounts to a backwards step for transparency by Labour.
“Even though these targets should be easier to meet, ambulances across mid Wales and in Cwm Taf still aren’t arriving within the target time. Ministers should be incredibly concerned by this, with Hywel Dda in particular way below the 65% target.”