A REPORT published this week shows most patients are happy with ambulance services in the region but emergency waiting times could be improved.

Last year, the North East Ambulance Service answered more than a million emergency 999 and NHS111 calls and took patients to hospital from almost 300,000 incidents. It treated and discharged 24,000 patients over the phone and 92,141 at home and scheduled care crews completed 717,315 journeys.

Feedback from more than 6,500 patients, between August 2016 and October 2017, show high satisfaction levels.

It looked particularly at waiting times, treatment by staff, the transportation vehicle, outcomes of using NHS111 and the likelihood of patients recommending the service

Most patients found that following the advice provided by 111 helped resolve the problem and 88 per cent said they would recommend th service, more than nine in every ten patients said they were 'likely’ or ‘extremely likely’ to recommend the emergency care or patient transport service and seven in every ten emergency care patients rated their experience ten out of ten.

Rated ‘good’ by the Care Quality Commission at its last inspection, NEAS should be proud of its staff according to the Ipsos Mori report. It added: "Areas for possible future improvement are the time taken for emergency care users to be reached by ambulance.”

Chief operating officer at NEAS, Paul Liversidge, said the NHS has experienced challenging times but the report was testament to the care and dedication of the NEAS workforce, which strives to help people in the region and target areas for possible improvement.

He said: “It has been a challenging time for all parts of the NHS recently but the findings in this report are testament to the care and dedication of the people that make up our workforce, who strive to make a difference, day in, day out, to people across the North East.

"We continue to support them to deliver the best service we can and we are targeting those areas particularly highlighted by patients to make improvements.

"Feedback from patients plays an important part of how we improve our service.”