New ambulance response standards go live

Date: 18 October 2017

Time: 12:10

Ambulance Blue Lights in Depot

Ambulance staff have been praised for their commitment to ensuring new response standards went live today (Wednesday, 18th October).

The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) announced that it has today implemented the new Government approved categories for how emergency calls are triaged, responded to and reported. 

The standards are being introduced nationally and as reported in August, EEAST Chief Executive Robert Morton welcome the changes which were piloted in three English ambulance services with a study on 14 million patients. NHS England announced in July that the rest of the country will implement the standards this year.

Today, he echoed the sentiments of colleagues in paying tribute to the teams involved: “It’s been a non-stop, intense process over the past few months to get to where we are today. It has involved our operational teams out on the road and in the control room, our clinical quality colleagues, and support services getting to grips with the most fundamental change to ambulance response in decades, and I’d like to thank everyone involved for their efforts in getting the project off the ground.

“For our trust, this new set of ambulance standards will help us focus more towards counting patient outcomes as performance and not draconian measures which failed to take into account the care we gave, and focused more on how quickly we go reached someone even when the need to do so had no bearing on outcome.  It still means we focus on the life-threatened patients first but also puts more emphasis on benefits to people suffering strokes, for instance getting the right type of resource first time for the right outcome.

“Colleagues out in the community have been supportive of these changes and the benefits that they see patients will get from this,  despite the level of uncertainty there is in how these changes would affect their working lives. It’ll still be some time before we can bed down these changes and be clear on the operating model which clearly defines how we respond to our patients especially as we go into winter period of higher demand than average days, but we expect to see the benefits to lower acuity patient response really improve in a short matter of time.”

Kevin Brown, EEAST Director of Service Delivery, said: “The implementation of ARP went remarkably well and to the timeline. The planning was exceptional and well done to everyone involved overnight.”

For more information on the Ambulance Response Programme (ARP) standards in EEAST and a new video on what now happens when someone makes a 999 call, visit

  • Summary:

    Ambulance staff have been praised for their commitment to ensuring new response standards went live today.