best tracker Critically ill patients face ‘deadly’ waiting times for ambulances, shock new figures reveal – Techss

Critically ill patients face ‘deadly’ waiting times for ambulances, shock new figures reveal

CRITICALLY ill patients are facing “deadly” waits of up to two hours for ambulances, shock new figures revealed.

Struggling emergency services took up to 121 minutes to get to people on top priority “purple” incidents in the past year.


Some patients waited up to 121 minutes to reach patients[/caption]


Dame Jackie Baillie urged the SNP to “wake up” to the crisis[/caption]

And some call-outs categorised as second-rung code “red” – historically with the same eight-minute target time – took nearly nine hours, it’s emerged.

The details were revealed after a freedom of information request by Scottish Labour, who asked for the longest times between January 2023 and 2024.

And amid long waits to drop patients due to crammed wards, stats also showed three hospitals reported turnaround times of more than 24 hours for ambulances arriving at hospitals to the point when they are ready to respond to the next new call.

Scottish Labour MSP and health spokesperson Jackie Baillie said Health Secretary Neil Gray “must wake up to this deadly crisis”.

She said “Purple call-outs are more often than not a matter of life and death – but lives are being put at risk due to unacceptable waits.

“Paramedics are working tirelessly to save lives across Scotland, but it is clear that our NHS is overheating under this SNP Government.”

The Scottish Ambulance Service has four categories for call-outs – purple for the “most critically ill patients”, red for “where a patient is identified as having a likelihood of cardiac arrest between one per cent and 9.9 per cent”, amber “where a patient is likely to need diagnosis and transport to hospital or specialist care”, and Yellow where “a patient who has a need for care but has a very low likelihood of requiring life-saving interventions”.

For purple incidents, The statistics showed waits including a wait of over two hours in NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, a wait of almost two hours in NHS Grampian, a wait of over an hour and a half in NHS Ayrshire and Arran, and waits of over an hour in Fife, Highland, Lanarkshire and Tayside.

On turnaround times, the University Hospital Ayr, Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary and Glasgow’s Queen Elizabeth University hospital, all saw waits of over 24 hours recorded in the past year.

Latest ambulance service stats suggested a typical response time for purple incidents is 7 minutes 17 seconds, with one in ten calls taking at least 17 minutes 2 seconds.

For red incidents, a typical time is given as 8 minutes 22 seconds, with one in ten callouts taking a minimum 18 minutes 52 seconds.

The Scottish Ambulance Service spokesperson said longer response times can relate to incidents “where the caller contacted us initially with a less acute issue and has subsequently been upgraded due to a change in their condition”.

A spokesperson said: “Hospital turnaround times are a well-known issue in specific areas and we remain focused on working with health boards to improve these. ”

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “Patient safety remains our top priority. Despite increased levels of high priority calls, and the unique geographical challenges posed in some of Scotland’s most rural areas, crews across Scotland responded to the highest priority calls last week in a median time of 7 minutes 17 seconds.

“We are committed to ensuring that there are no unnecessary delays in transferring patients to hospital and we continue to work closely with Health Boards and the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS), to maintain such a fast response to the most critically unwell.”

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