£10m ambulance upgrade fund gets cautious welcome from Rhondda doctor

Credited: Welsh Ambulances from the Welsh Ambulance Service

The Welsh Ambulance service Trust is to receive 84 upgraded and modernised ambulances as pat of a £10 million investment by the Welsh Government.

With ambulance services and the NHS under severely increased pressure due to the pandemic, Vaughn Gething, the Welsh Health minister, said the ambulances will be able to deliver the best care to patients, as well as supporting surges in services due to the pandemic.  

The move has been welcomed Dr Jay Karia, a GP in Rhondda, who works closely with the ambulance service on a daily basis.

He said: “Improvements in medical technology and advancements in ambulances will mean many more patients will receive better care.”

However, he also explains: “Although these new ambulances are great, there is a bigger issue that the government needs to look at, especially when it comes to the long waiting times for ambulance crews to hand over patients to the Accident and Emergency. Hospitals are working at full capacity and addressing this could get more ambulances back on welsh roads.”

The Welsh Ambulance Service Trust has said the ambulances “should be on the roads in the next few months” and will continue to provide the best treatment and patient care as possible.

“Ambulances and response cars in Wales are some of the most modern and well equipped in the UK and this funding will allow us to continue to replace our vehicles as they reach the end of their working life,” said a spokesperson.

The Welsh Government has also announced a further £1.6 million pounds in funding for the Emergency Medical Retrieval Transfer service (EMRTS) in order to expand the service into a 24/7 operation and to establish Critical Care Transfer service which transfers critically ill patients across Wales.