FOI response from the London Ambulance Service
Published: Tuesday, 22 January 2013 11:37
Written by Alan Aitken
We have recently received a response to a Freedom of Information request made to the London Ambulance Service. The information provided gives us a glimpse into the impact of cuts to emergency services.
Amongst other important points, shop the response contains proof that there has been a reduction in the number of Ambulance Crews operating within the trust from 2009 to 2012.
We can also see a substantial increase in the Average Handover time from personnel having patient to handing over the patient to medical staff at the nearest facility.
The response, clinic including the questions asked, can be found directly below.
REQUEST UNDER THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000
Further to your enquiry made under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, which we received on 14th October 2012, you requested the following information:
1 I would like to know how many 999 Ambulance Crews the Trust has/had in 2010,2011 & 2012 ?
2 I would like to know how many ambulances are sent out with just 1 Crew Member on average 2010,2011, & 2012 on a month by month basis until August for 2012 ?
3 How Many times Has London Ambulance service needed to use Private Ambulances ? in 2010,2011 & 2012 on a month by month basis until August for 2012
Hours and Working
4 How Many members of Staff of London ambulance service have zero hour contracts ?
5 How many Have zero hour contracts in 2010,2011 & 2012 upto August 2012 ?
6 Will the Service have to make reductions in staffing iuf so how many ? And will any of these be due to the MARS (Mutually Agreed Resignation Scheme)
Travel & Patient Handover
7 Whats the Average travel time to the nearest emergency medical facility ?in 2010, 2011 & 2012 upto August
8 Whats the Average Handover Time from personnel having patient to handing over the patient to medical staff at the nearest facility 2010,2011 & 2012 upto august
9 Whats the longest time ambulance staff have had to wait before they have been able to handover a patient in 2010,2011, & 2012 upto August Consultations
10 Has London Ambulance service been consulted as to the possible closure to Hammersmith and charring cross hospitals
11 Has the London Ambulance Service done any calculations as to the effect of the proposed closure of Charring Cross and Hammersmith Hospital.
11a The Increase in distances travelled before the ambulance gets to a medical facility in aprticular A&
11b Has the London Ambulance service done any calculations as to the number of extra fatalities this may create.
11c Will London Ambulance service need extra crews to counteract the increases in travel time and the increases in handover when the remaining A&E units are swamped
Our response is as follows:
1. FY 09/10 (April-March) - 3260 as at Month 12 wte in post.
FY 10/11(April-March) - 3233 as at Month 12 wte in post.
FY 11/12 (April-March) - 3028 as at Month 12 wte in post.
FY 12/13 (April-March) - 3009 as at Month 7 wte in post.
Staff grades are from Team Leader to A&E Support.
2. The LAS has not sent out any single-crewed ambulances in any of the above years. We do not operate that as part of our response system.
3. Please see the attached spreadsheet for details of LAS use of private ambulance services.
4. We do not use zero hour contracts. We run a bank but there is no mutuality of obligation and those on the bank are not employees.
6. Reduction in staffing is being managed by turnover, redeployment and restrictions on recruitment activity (see attached News Release). We do not operate a MARS scheme.
7. The average time, in minutes, from scene to hospital is as follows:
Year AVG to Hospital
2012 13.32 (to August)
It is not possible to state that a patient was taken to the nearest medical facility, only that they were taken to a medical facility.
8. Average Arrive Hospital to Patient Handover (mins):
2009/10 (April/March) 12.7
2010/11 (April/March) 14.2
2011/12 (April/March) 16.6
9. The longest Arrive hospital to patient handover time was 171 minutes on 11th December 2010.
10. The LAS is aware of the North West London Shaping a Healthier Future consultation document and attended the JHOSC held at Ealing Town Hall on 6th September 2012 when travel arrangements were discussed.
11. The LAS has completed modelling around the proposals set out in the consultation.
11a The modelling includes the potential impact on travelling times needed to get to the nearest E/D.
11b The London Ambulance Service has modelled the extra resources needed to mitigate the effects of the response times in relation to the consultation.
11c An increase in resources will be needed to balance the impact in travelling times.
There has been no modelling completed on increase in handover times. This would be best answered by the Acute Trust.