Fighting the fire: a response to fire chiefs' proposal to run England's ambulance service

October 2010

The fire and rescue service in England has proposed taking over and running the ambulance service. This has obviously sparked a great debate among both the ambulance and fire service industry. According to the Chief Fire Officers Association (CFOA), the ambulance service is struggling to meet its response targets of dealing with 75% of life-threatening calls within eight minutes, and believes the fire service could respond to life-threatening calls within eight minutes 90% of the time. This proposal is detailed below, followed by a commentary by Professor Malcolm Woollard, Honorary Consultant Paramedic and Director of the Pre-hospital, Emergency and Cardiovascular Care Applied Research Group at Coventry University, who argues why this idea is not workable.

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