SOLIHULL looks set to get a third ambulance as plans to cut the Dorridge-based rapid response vehicle go ahead.
The long-awaited third double-crewed ambulance will be making its way to the borough at the end of the month (March) following a rise in demand for ambulance treatment.
West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) has said it is rare for the response posts such as Dorridge to be used, which means they are no longer cost effective to have.
Staff who work on the rapid response vehicle will be based on ambulances, according to the Ambulance Service.
The cost of the ambulance is believed to be around twice as much as a rapid response vehicle but WMAS stated using ambulances makes the service much more efficient.
WMAS added: “We would much rather invest our funding in increasing the number of frontline ambulance staff who save lives, than by having little used buildings.
“By substantially increasing the number of ambulances available while reducing the number of rapid response vehicles, patients receive a much better standard of care; for example, they don’t have to wait for a back-up ambulance after initially being seen by a rapid response vehicle, which means patients get to hospital more quickly for life-saving treatment.
“The overwhelming need for patients is to provide an ambulance with a paramedic on board so that the crew can deal with the patients’ needs. This could be treatment at the scene or transport to another setting such as a hospital.”
“West Midlands Ambulance service is the only service in the country to have a paramedic on every ambulance and the only ambulance service to consistently achieve the response time targets.
“The Trust continues to keep our arrangements under review to ensure we remain the best performing Ambulance Service in our country.”
Two double-crewed Ambulances were installed in Solihull Hospital in November 2014 following a successful campaign by opposers of the controversial Make Ready scheme which saw all ambulance operating out of a central hub in Erdington after Solihull Ambulance Station on Hermitage Road was closed down in September 2013.