A Lincolnshire police officer has called for more funding for the NHS after seeing rescue ambulances and six colleagues sitting with patients.
PC Jimmy Conway tweeted that he had to ‘turn the blue light’ on a patient in hospital due to a three-hour wait and when he arrived he found ambulances backed up and six officers seated with patients.
Lincolnshire Police have confirmed officers took a person to Lincoln County Hospital on Sunday just before 6.30pm after being called to a property in a village near Sleaford following reports of an assault.
The East Midlands Ambulance Service said it received a call at 7.25pm on Sunday in Billingborough which was classed as a ‘serious but not life-threatening’ category two call. They received another call 39 minutes later that the officer was taking the patient to the hospital.
In his social media post, PC Conway said: “On arrival the ambulances backed up.
“In the meantime, I counted six other police officers sitting with patients.
“Our NHS really needs more funding.”
The East Midlands Ambulance Service apologized and thanked officers for taking the patient to hospital on Sunday evening.
They said that, based on information shared in initial calls, the incident had been classified as “not immediately life threatening”. The ambulance service aims to handle nine out of 10 Category 2 calls within 40 minutes.
At a recent board meeting, ambulance service leaders discussed the “unacceptable” model of ambulances spending hours waiting outside the emergency department to get patients out reduces response times.
The service says transfer delays are a symptom of wider pressures across the NHS and social care systems and partners are working together to address staffing issues while trying to improve patient flow.
Sue Cousland, Lincolnshire Divisional Manager at the East Midlands Ambulance Service, said: ‘We are very sorry that we were unable to provide an ambulance response to the patient sooner on this occasion and would like to thank our colleagues at Lincolnshire Police for supporting the patient in taking them to the hospital. We would like to speak to the patient or their family and urge them to contact us as soon as possible.
“We continue to receive a high and sustained level of serious and life-threatening emergency calls and our 999 control rooms are working hard to ensure people facing life-threatening emergencies, such as cardiac arrest, receive first an ambulance intervention.
“We continue to work closely with all of our health and social care colleagues in Lincolnshire to find solutions to the system-wide challenges we face, including ambulance transfer delays.”
Deputy Chief Constable Julia Debenham said Lincolnshire Police said: ‘It is entirely possible that one of our operational officers may find themselves called upon to assist patients in need of urgent medical assistance. Part of our role is to protect and help keep people safe and it is true that we may be the only service that can help at this particular time.
“We are aware of the need to work with our partners to manage demand and we have regular positive conversations that aim to ensure that our own organizations provide services to the Lincolnshire public that help them protect themselves from harm and feel free. protected.
Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner Marc Jones said: “This incident illustrates an ongoing challenge for operational policing not just in Lincolnshire but across the UK.
“This is not a new phenomenon – for years frontline police officers have attended emergencies which have required them to remain at the scene awaiting ambulance or medical support and there are many incidents where police officers have to deal with issues related to mental health issues.
“The specific problem of escorting both victims or offenders to hospital is also a common occurrence and the latest incident will be just one of many that occur regularly – although it may be a particularly extreme case.
“But we must remember that our frontline colleagues in the health service are also under pressure due to many challenges, including the difficulties caused by covid.
“We are constantly looking for new ways to work with partners to ensure that we provide all the best services possible in our determination to protect residents and communities from harm.”