South Central Ambulance Service has best response times

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South Central Ambulance Service is the best performing in England in terms of response times, new NHS figures show.

The data shows how many life-threatening calls are responded to within eight minutes.

In 2010-11, South Central's category A response rate came top with 77.5%. The average was 74.9%.

South Central covers Hampshire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire and handles about 500,000 emergency calls a year.

A spokesman for South Central said; "We are delighted to be the best performing ambulance service in England to response times.

"This is due to the dedication and commitment of our front-line and back office staff and the many volunteers and NHS partners that help us."

East Midlands, Yorkshire, North West, East of England and Great Western ambulance services all fell below the national average.

Tim Straughan, chief executive of the NHS Information Centre, said: "Our annual report shows that ambulance trusts in England are dealing with more emergency calls each year, with the latest annual total topping eight million.

"Despite the increased workload, trusts are moving closer to achieving the target for being on the scene of most serious incidents within eight minutes."

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