21388 - Frequent Callers

Please can you tell me:
-       How many callers are currently classed as frequent callers by EEAST, in Norfolk, Suffolk, and Cambs, broken down by county?
 
-       What is the EEAST definition of a frequent caller? How often / how many calls do they have to make?
The Trust work to a nationally agreed criteria which is set by the Frequent Caller National Network (Ambulance group comprised of members from all ambulance services in the UK incl. Northern Ireland). The current criteria is as follows:
  • For adults 18 and over = 5 or more calls in one month OR 12 or more calls in three months
  • For communal addresses = 15 or more calls in one month
  • For under 18’s = 3 or more calls in a rolling six-month period
 
-       For the top five most frequent callers in Norfolk, Suffolk, and Cambs, how many calls have they made in the last year?
  • Reference:
    21388
  • Response:
    Please can you tell me:
    -       How many callers are currently classed as frequent callers by EEAST, in Norfolk, Suffolk, and Cambs, broken down by county?
    Norfolk = 41
    Suffolk = 21
    Cambs = 24
    These numbers are for those patients on active plans at present.
     
    -       What is the EEAST definition of a frequent caller? How often / how many calls do they have to make?
    The Trust work to a nationally agreed criteria which is set by the Frequent Caller National Network (Ambulance group comprised of members from all ambulance services in the UK incl. Northern Ireland). The current criteria is as follows:
    • For adults 18 and over = 5 or more calls in one month OR 12 or more calls in three months
    • For communal addresses = 15 or more calls in one month
    • For under 18’s = 3 or more calls in a rolling six-month period
     
    -       For the top five most frequent callers in Norfolk, Suffolk, and Cambs, how many calls have they made in the last year?

    Please find attached the spread sheet FOI - 21388

    -       How many prosecutions have there been for frequent callers involving EEAST in the last five years, broken down by year?

    The following figures are for the number of prosecutions under the Malicious Communications Act for the mis-use of 999 across EEAST’s six counties:
    2019 – 3
    2018 – 2
    2016 – 1

    All prosecutions we have been part of have been led by the Police, we have undertaken no prosecutions directly as a Trust. Those patients prosecuted have also been mis-using the Police 999 service in addition to our own.

    -       What is EEAST’s procedure for referring callers on to other services? For example mental health services if the patient appears to be mentally unwell.

    The first stage of our Policy (The Policy for the Management of Patients with Defined Individual Needs) is to write to a patient’s registered GP. The letter we send advises that the patient is a frequent caller and we request a multi-agency meeting to discuss the needs of the patient and the onwards management at this stage. We also ask for the GP to make us aware of any other Health Care Professional/team involved with the patient. Where we identify an unmet care need, we will do everything within our power to address this and this can include referrals to appropriate teams, such as mental health providers, meetings with the patient, multiple meetings with other professionals etc.

    -       How does EEAST warn frequent callers before prosecutions? I.E. Do they receive letters, verbal warnings etc?

    Where a patient is placed on an EEAST frequent caller plan they receive a letter from the frequent caller team which explains the plan they have been placed on. This letter, where indicated, also includes a written warning regards their call volume and further action should it not reduce. We only include this warning for those patients where it is clear they are mis-using the 999 system and/or are abusive to trust staff. For abusive patients we also include a paragraph relating to further action should there be further incidents of abusive behaviour. On average we attempt to help and manage a patient for a minimum of 18 months to 2 years before prosecution is even discussed amongst the professionals involved. In addition to this letter the frequent caller team will at times conduct home visits (with the patient’s consent) and invite patient’s to multi-agency meetings in order that they be a part of a care plan moving forwards. Once a prosecution process has started then we would only communicate with the patient as governed by the police investigation.
  • Area:
    Trust wide
  • Category:
    Calls
  • Month:
  • Year:

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