Ambulance delays forcing one in three to make their own way to hospital

Ambulance delays averaging 90 minutes have forced one in three patients to make their own way to hospital, a survey has found.

People have been forced to drive or even take public transport because ambulance waiting times have risen to their longest on record.

A poll of more than 2,000 people by Savanta for the Liberal Democrats showed one-third (34 per cent) of adults who had called for an ambulance in the last year for either themselves or a family member, said they had made their own way to hospital due to the lengthy waiting time. 

This includes one in six (17 per cent) who drove, one in 10 (11 per cent) who took a taxi, and even some (six per cent) who used public transport. 

Just over half (55 per cent) of adults in the poll who called 999 to request an ambulance say that they waited for one, despite being in need of medical care. 

Daisy Cooper, the Liberal Democrats’ health spokeswoman, said: “These frightening figures reveal the horror of England’s ambulance crisis. 

“Not only have ambulance services been left to pick up the slack of a broken health and care system, now people are being left to drive or even take a bus just to get to A&E because the ambulances themselves can’t get there in time. This is truly scandalous.”

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