Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : Ministers “failing patients on a monstrous scale” as ambulance handover stats revealed [December 2022]

The press release issued by the Liberal Democrats on 15 December 2022.

The Liberal Democrat’s have accused Ministers of “failing patients on a monstrous scale” in response to new figures that reveal 29,000 hours were lost waiting to handover patients from ambulances to A&E last week alone.

The figures, published today by NHS England show that 34% of all patients arriving by ambulance from Monday 5th to Sunday 11th December waited for more than 30 minutes to be handed over to A&E: 25,182 out of 74,823.

12,534 patients were waiting for more than an hour, 17% of the total and 49% more than in the same week last year. That’s despite the total number of ambulance arrivals having fallen by 11% year-on-year.

Excluding the first 30 minutes, handover delays cost ambulances across England a total of 29,139 hours last week.

Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Daisy Cooper said:

“Ministers are failing patients on a monstrous scale, with thousands of people spending thousands of hours stuck in an ambulance outside a hospital.

That’s thousands of hours with paramedics out-of-action, unable to respond to emergencies – a big part of the reason that so many people wait hours for an ambulance after calling 999.

“The Conservatives have driven our health and social care services into the ground for years, and this is the result.

“The Liberal Democrats have put forward a clear plan to tackle these shocking delays and stop our NHS slipping from crisis into catastrophe this winter. The Government must act now to tackle workforce shortages, fix the social care crisis and end the shortage of hospital beds.