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Transforming NHS ambulance services
  1. Geoff Hughes
  1. Emergency Department, Royal Adelaide Hospital, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Geoff Hughes, Emergency Department, Royal Adelaide Hospital, North Terrace, Adelaide 5000, Australia; cchdhb{at}

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In June the National Audit Office published a 48-page document called ‘Transforming NHS Ambulance Services’. It is forthright and clear in what it has to say and, depending on your perspective, it offers either a threat or an opportunity for ambulance services to respond.1

A contemporaneous press release indicates that the report is being taken seriously by the Public Accounts Committee, itself part of the National Audit Office; it wants to explore with the Department of Health (DH) how ambulance services intend to achieve efficiency savings without damaging the quality of the services they provide (with the context that the number of emergency calls has been increasing at a rate of 4% a year), and how it intends to achieve better integration of ambulance services with other parts of the emergency care system. Ominously, perhaps, if you are a senior DH official, the Committee looks forward to exploring these vital issues with senior officials when they …

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