Ambulance service ‘a disgrace’

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AMBULANCE response times will go under the microscope at next month’s Sutton Bridge Parish Council after they were branded “disgraceful” by member David Dewsberry.

Coun Dewsberry told Tuesday’s meeting he knew of two people who waited several hours to go to hospital rather than the seven minutes it is supposed to take.

He said: “The ambulance service in Sutton Bridge is disgraceful.

“It took four-and-a-half hours after calling an ambulance for my cousin to go to King’s Lynn hospital and I saw in the paper this week that a gentleman, who was buried this morning, also had a long wait, three hours.

“We hear that an ambulance can get to a person in seven minutes – it might be all right in London but it’s not in the country.

“I think ambulance services should be looked at very severely in our county.”

East Midlands Ambulance Service has already apologised to the family of the man who died, John Waring.

Coun Dewsberry’s cousin, Frieda Minns (83), said her wait was actually almost six hours – an out of hours doctor summoned an ambulance at 9pm and it didn’t turn up until about 2.45am.

Mrs Minns, from Chestnut Terrace, said she was admitted with breathing difficulties and had a five-week stay.

She said: “When we got to hospital at King’s Lynn the first thing they said to my daughter-in-law was ‘we were expecting this lady in at 9pm, we have been waiting for her since then’.

“It worries me. It seems that everybody is waiting hours and hours.”

Mrs Minns said she is also worried by EMAS proposals to close ambulance stations and reorganise the service.