East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS)

1 Horizon Place
Mellors Way
Nottingham Business Park

0333 012 4216


Rated 1/5 by 2 people

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1 month ago

East Midlands Ambulance Service was contacted by Derbyshire police and a female from East Midlands Ambulance Service contacted me at 02:22 and asked me what the problem was so I told them and she told that they were busy but they would have a crew with me as soon as possible.

Then at 03:03 a Mental Health Nurse rang me and told me that there wasn’t going to be an ambulance sent to my address and that she was going to ring this Crisis Team.

Then the Mental Health Nurse rang me back at 03:37 and said she had to ring the Crisis Team and she would ring me back to let me know when they were going to contact me.

At 05:30 the Mental Health Nurse or the Crisis Team hadn’t rung me back. I rang the Crisis Team myself and they said they’d hadn’t heard anything from EMAS.

2 years ago

My 88-yearold father-in-law fell down on his drive outside his house in Wyaston at around 5.15pm on Sunday 6th March. He was unable to get up, but his nephew discovered him when my father-in-law called for help. A 999-call was made requesting an ambulance at around 5.20pm. Several subsequent calls had to be made, because there was apparently no ambulance available and my father-in-law was lying on the ground in freezing temperatures. His condition was not getting any better and he was extremely uncomfortable to say the least. Neighbours and relatives managed to keep him warm with blankets while we waited for assistance – I arrived around 5.25pm and witnessed the situation + offered what assistance I could.

A paramedic eventually arrived at around 6.20pm (over an hour after the initial call) and he examined my father-in-law. He didn’t want to get him up, or move him, as he suspected a broken hip. He used his radio to find out when an ambulance might be coming, but got little help with an estimated time of arrival. The ambulance finally arrived at around 6.55pm. By this time my father-in-law had been lying on the ground (in the cold and dark) for over an hour-and-a-half!

I have nothing but praise for the paramedic (from Loughborough) and similarly the ambulance crew who got my father-in-law in the ambulance and took him to the Royal Derby Hospital where his hip fracture was subsequently confirmed. However, what I find appalling is the time it took to get an ambulance to the scene following a 999-call. There is something clearly wrong with a system that allows an 88-yearold frail elderly man to be left lying outside in freezing temperatures for this length of time. Matters were made worse by the fact that the dispatcher/999-contact person had no idea when an ambulance or help would arrive – it appears he had no sight into current deployment of emergency crews and stated that there was something wrong with the GPS-system.

The response time to a 999-call, even in a rural location such as Wyaston, should never be this long. If there are not enough crews to cope with demand then more investment is clearly needed. If my father-in-law’s situation on an algorithm did not give him the highest priority possible then this needs to be looked at urgently. If there are problems with the GPS-system then they need to be sorted as a priority.


East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) responded:

I was sorry to read about the delayed response to reach your father-in-law but would like to thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us via the Healthwatch Derbyshire website. EMAS (along with all other ambulance services in the UK) is experiencing very high level of demand, including an increase in immediately life threatening conditions (cardiac arrest, heart attack, breathing difficulties, strokes etc.). This frequently means that all the ambulances we have available are occupied on 999s. It can also be the case that ambulances which have been sent to respond to an urgent call (such as your father-in-law’s) have to be redirected whilst en route to respond to a life threatening emergency. This may well explain the delay on the day in question. We are keen to hear about stories, such as those experienced by your father-in-law, so that we may learn from them in the future. If you are able, we would appreciate you sharing your experience with our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) team, with as much detail as you can (e.g. date, time and location), so that they can establish the actual reasons for the delay and let you know the results of their investigation. You may contact them via telephone on 0333 012 4216 or email PALS.Office@emas.nhs.uk

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