• Case ref:
  • Date:
    August 2019
  • Body:
    Scottish Ambulance Service
  • Sector(s):
  • Subject:
    failure to send ambulance / delay in sending ambulance
  • Outcome:
    Upheld, no recommendations


Mr C called an ambulance after finding his wife (Mrs A) in a concerning condition. The ambulance took longer to arrive than Mr C felt was reasonable, and he made further calls to the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS) before it arrived.

When Mr C complained to SAS about this, their investigation concluded that the call had not been handled in line with their protocol and that, had protocol been correctly followed, a higher acuity may have been given to the call and an ambulance diverted from another call to respond. SAS apologised for the delay in the ambulance arriving and took steps to prevent a similar situation recurring. Mr C was dissatisfied and raised his complaints with us.

We found that there was an unreasonable delay in the ambulance arriving but found no evidence to determine whether a higher acuity would have been given or an ambulance diverted if the protocol had been followed correctly. We upheld the complaint but made no further recommendations.