The Healthcare Commission's review of emergency and urgent care rightly recognises significant improvements in access and response times, including for ambulances.
Ambulance services are reaching more patients faster than ever; even since the review's data was collected, significant improvements have been made in ambulance response times; all ambulance trusts anticipate they will hit the national target for patients with immediately life threatening incidents by the end of the year.
We agree with the commission that the NHS should celebrate the achievements and progress it has made while acknowledging that there is much more to do. Indeed, the commission has clearly set out the areas that need improvements.
At the Ambulance Service Network, we are delighted the report backs our call for pilots of a new single number for urgent care.
The report also emphasises the need to focus on keeping patients out of hospital and calls for a shift in the way services are measured towards patient outcomes and experiences, so we can ensure patients get the best care in the most appropriate place.
Liz Kendall, director, Ambulance Service Network