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Thames Ambulance Service loses NHS contract in Hull

Thames Ambulance Service vehicle
Image caption Thames Ambulance Service's contract in Hull started in 2017

A private ambulance company that was described as "inept and disorganised" by its own staff has been stripped of an NHS contract.

Thames Ambulance Service Limited (TASL) will stop providing patient transport services in Hull next year.

The non-emergency service will be instead be operated by NHS-run Yorkshire Ambulance Service from March 2020.

TASL described losing the contract as a "great disappointment".

The company had faced a number of complaints, and MPs had called for its contracts to be terminated during a parliamentary debate.

'Horrendous'

Doreen Brown, whose husband George requires kidney dialysis in Hull three times a week, said she was "not surprised" by the news.

She said TASL "forgets to pick him up sometimes" and added she had made a number of complaints.

"Getting him home is just horrendous," she said, adding: "He is waiting two hours sometimes."

NHS Hull Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) said it had made the decision to terminate the contract after talking to patients.

"Our main priority is to commission services of the highest quality that meet the needs of patients in Hull," said Joy Dodson, of the organisation.

TASL said: "We are immensely proud of our team at Hull and the work we have done together.

"We know that our hard-working and passionate colleagues will continue giving their best and doing fantastic work with the new provider."

The contract with TASL started in April 2017 and had been intended to run until 2022.

The CCG said the new contract with Yorkshire Ambulance Service would run for five years at a cost of £1.5m per year.

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