Derby

East Midlands Ambulance Service to get more paramedics

East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) is to employ more paramedics in a bid to improve response times.

EMAS is expected to bring in 100 paramedics and frontline staff after NHS data showed it had the worst response times in England.

The posts will be funded by Primary Care Trusts.

However, in a separate move, about 20 backroom jobs may be lost as the service tries to make £6m in savings by the end of March 2011.

Satellite plotting

An EMAS spokesman said the service was also looking at making savings by responding to emergency calls more efficiently.

He said a satellite plotting system is in use throughout the region to ensure the nearest available vehicle responds to a call.

Figures released in July showed in June 2010, the service responded to 72.3% of Category A calls in eight minutes compared to a national average of 76.3%.

EMAS said earlier in a statement: "We acknowledge that we are not currently hitting those standards consistently but this masks the fact that despite our best efforts, some of our responses are outside the target time simply because we are responding to more 999 calls than in the past."

The service covers six counties and handles more than 600,000 emergency calls a year.

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