Ambulance turnaround time tackled at The Northumbria hospital

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has announced the start of works at The Northumbria hospital to improve ambulance turnaround.

Wednesday, 1st November 2017, 13:19 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 12:03 pm
The Northumbria Hospital at Cramlington.

Since opening, The Northumbria has seen an increasing number of patients needing its services.

This has meant that ambulances have sometimes struggled to hand over patients within the national target of 15 minutes.

The move, part of the trust’s winter preparations, follows measures taken last year which have already helped boost performance.

These include clinical advice lines for paramedics to call ahead and speak to consultants and senior triage staff on arrival; ensuring ambulance crews are aware of when patients could be taken directly to urgent care centres; and providing direct access for paramedics to admit patients directly to certain departments.

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Dr Jeremy Rushmer, medical director at Northumbria Healthcare, said: “We take public and staff feedback very seriously and we’re always willing to try new ways of doing things if it means we provide a better level of service. We’ve listened and then acted on what we’ve been told.”

The modifications – primarily affecting the North East Ambulance Service patient arrival bays – will start almost immediately. The aim is to improve patient privacy and dignity on arrival and to enable ambulances and their highly trained crews to get back out on the road.

“Turning around ambulances faster is obviously in everyone’s best interest,” continued Dr Rushmer. “We won’t be resting on our laurels though – we fully expect this winter to be hard and are determined to be ready for it.”