Senedd committee raises concern over axing of rapid response vehicle
Saul Cooke-Black, local democracy reporter
Contentious plans to remove a rapid response vehicle from Monmouth ambulance station will increase the number of serious incidents not being responded to, a Senedd member has claimed.
The Welsh Ambulance Service NHS Trust (WAST) is considering halving its emergency vehicle fleet at Monmouth ambulance station, leaving just one vehicle to cover the area.
A petition demanding a halt to the plans, signed by more than 3,000 people, was discussed at a Senedd committee meeting on Monday.
Joel James, Senedd member for South Wales Central, suggested the committee writes to WAST about why the proposal is being considered.
“There are concerns about significant number of amber incidents not being attended to, and getting rid of the rapid response vehicle will just make that situation a lot worse, rather than improve the situation,” Mr James said.
Amber calls are those categorised as “serious but not immediately life-threatening” and represent the majority of emergency calls made to WAST.
Chairman of the petitions committee, Jack Sargeant, said other members were in agreement with Mr James.
The Welsh Ambulance service has said the plans are aimed at better matching capacity to demand.
Petitioners met with Jason Killens, chief executive of WAST, after the petition was presented to the Senedd earlier this month.
Mr Killens said the meeting was ‘productive’ and that WAST would consider and respond to the questions asked at the meeting.
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