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16 April 2015, 06:15 | Updated: 16 April 2015, 06:36
The East of England Ambulance Service has been named the best in the UK for how quickly it gets to the most critically ill patients.
EEAST was the best performing ambulance service in England for its response to Red 1 calls in February, according to new figures.
The latest ambulance quality indicators, published by NHS England, reveal that the Trust responded to 77.7% of the most time critical 999 calls within eight minutes. The target is 75% and the national average for ambulance services in February was 72%.
In February 2014, EEAST was one of the worst performing ambulance services for Red 1 performance at 70.8%.
Anthony Marsh, EEAST Chief Executive, said he was delighted with the latest performance figures, adding: “This is further evidence of how much the Trust has improved over the last year, despite an increase in demand, which is thanks to the dedication and hard work of all our staff and volunteers.
“We know we have more to do to hit all our performance targets and that is why we are hiring and training hundreds more student paramedics this year to replicate last year’s recruitment drive and offering our existing front-line staff opportunities to gain new skills.”
The Trust received more than 1,200 Red 1 calls in February, which includes cardiac arrests when a patient is not breathing and has no pulse.
Overall, more than 23,000 Red 2 calls in February were received, which includes patients who are suffering suspected strokes or serious breathing problems and 66.4% of those received a response in under eight minutes – the Trust’s best performance on Red 2 in 12 months.