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Welsh ambulance service to be 'disbanded'

15th September 2009

Plaid Cymru health spokeswoman Helen Mary Jones has called for the Welsh Ambulance Services trust to be "disbanded" and managed by local health boards.

Ambulance

She said the move would decrease the amount spent on managing the service, which would include scrapping the chief executive's £119,000 wages.

In a speech at a party conference in Llandudno, Ms Jones said a local service would result in an improvement in ambulance response times.

Currently, figures show that only 64% of ambulances called to "life-threatening" events reach their destination within eight minutes.

Ms Jones said the trust had not solved long-standing problems. She added: "The establishment of the local health boards throughout Wales offers us a very real and viable option for the future of the ambulance service."

"Ambulances could be co-ordinated on a far more local level, to ensure that the health authorities have to work in a joined-up way."

Edwina Hart, health minister for Wales, informed member of the assembly in the summer that she was "sick" of responding to queries about the service.

She added that they were working to improve the service but it was not gelling together in the right way.

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