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Ambulances called out 1,000 times to single Wolverhampton home

By Pete Madeley | Birmingham | Health | Published:

Ambulances were called out nearly 1,000 times over the last year – to just one city residence.

Ambulances were called out almost 1,000 times over the last year to just one Wolverhampton residence.

Figures from a Freedom of Information request show that in 2016-17 West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) received 942 calls – either 999 or 101 – from a single home in Wolverhampton.

A total of 46 hospital visits resulted from the ambulances attending, according to the data.

Lib Dems in the city have called for 'tailored action plans' for households that repeatedly call WMAS to make sure they get the care that they need.

Across the region 10 households called 999 a total of 4,352 times, resulting in an average of seven hospital visits for every 100 calls.

The figures show that a property in Birmingham made 1,171 calls relating to 489 incidents over a single year, resulting in 75 hospital visits.

The service also took 453 calls from a Tipton address, with a patient transported by ambulance from there on 28 occasions.

Elsewhere in the Black Country, another Wolverhampton address called ambulance assistance 284 times, and ambulances were called on 272 occasions to an address in Dudley.

All the calls were made from residential properties, according to WMAS.

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Lib Dem campaigner Ian Jenkins said: "These figures are mind-boggling.

"It's often because they don't have access to other services at this time and use the ambulance service as a 'last resort'.

"We need to create action plans for these people to make sure they get the tailored care they need.

"With the NHS at crisis point, I do worry that frequent callers make it harder for the ambulance service to reach others with more serious or potentially life-threatening conditions."

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Official NHS figures show it costs ambulance trusts around £8 to answer each 999 call, £155 to provide treatment at home and £255 to take a patient to hospital.

It means the most persistent callers are costing NHS around £30,000-a-year each making calls where an ambulance isn't needed.

West Midlands Ambulance Service says it works with the local health economy and social services to put in place care packages that are designed to find alternative solutions for individuals who are frequent 999 users.

Pete Madeley

By Pete Madeley
@P_Madeley_Star

Political Editor for the Express & Star. Responsible for local and national political stories, opinion, comment and analysis.

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