Ambulance service faces £2.2m fine for missing response targets

the troubled ambulance service faces a £2.2m fine

the troubled ambulance service faces a £2.2m fine - Credit: Archant

UNDER-FIRE ambulance bosses could be slapped with a fine of up to £2.2m after failing to meet response time targets.

The East of England Ambulance Service Trust has been hit in the pocket after not meeting national standards last year.

Welwyn Hatfield MP Grant Shapps has been left worried by the news and is seeking an urgent meeting with health chiefs to find out what is going on.

He said: “I’m really concerned as you know.

“I have followed up constituents concerns about response times and I carried out a quality survey.

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“I think this latest news is also a concern, when I met up with people in the operational management they seemed to grasp the scale of the problem – obviously it needs the bosses to understand.

“From the bosses I will be asking to see an updated action plan for getting things back on track as a result of the latest news.”

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The fine follows a Care Quality Commission report which found response times had “deteriorated” and “people could not be assured they would receive care in a timely and effective manner”.

The newly formed Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group and West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group have slapped the service with the fine – as they contract EEAST for the whole eastern region.

John Wicks, interim chief contracts officer for both groups told The WHT: “The national NHS contract has a financial consequence for ambulance trusts who fail to meet the agreed national standards for response times across an entire year.

“This equates to two per cent of the contract value and unfortunately in 2012-13 the East of England Ambulance Service Trust has fallen short of these standards and this consequence must be applied.”

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