"Fabulous service despite the fact that an ambulance shouldn't have been called"

About: NHS Direct NHS Trust / NHS 111 South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust / Emergency ambulance

(as the patient),

I called 111 as I have a chronic back problem which is playing up today, to ask if I could take more Oramorph than I am prescribed. I expected to speak to a nurse or GP to answer this question...Instead I got am ambulance who were told I had taken an overdose (which was massively incorrect & could effect my future prescriptions).

I'm truly sorry but I can't remember the names of the lady & gentleman who attended, but they were brilliant - despite the fact that they shouldn't have been there. They were helpful, friendly, efficient and knowledgeable. They called 111 and reiterated what I needed.

They secured a call-back from a GP (which happened around 10 mins later) and I got the answer I needed. I should never have had an emergency ambulance and I stated I was not going to A&E on the original call to 111 (I'm a LTC not an A&E case and I know that YDH are the primary hospital for Glastonbury today so would be ridiculously busy), however your team understood by position, did not blame me for it, made me comfortable and helped me get the answer I needed.

I have made a complaint to 111 and asked them to rectify their notes, review the way they handle calls like mine and call you and apologise.

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››


Response from Laura Martin, Patient Engagement Administrator, Governance, South Western Ambulance Service

picture of Laura Martin

Dear PumpkinDog

Thank you very much for taking the time to share your story.

It is always very rewarding to hear that our staff are continuing to provide the very best care to patients when they need it most. I will share your post with our staff and managers who, I'm sure, will very much appreciate your comments.

Thank you, again.


  • {{helpful}} of {{total()}} people think this response is helpful

Response from David Foord, Head of Clinical Governance, NHS Direct

Thank you for taking the time to provide this feedback, it is important to us to help us improve our services.

I am sorry that you had an ambulance sent to you when you didn't need one. I am also sorry about the inaccurate recording in your notes that you had taken an overdose. In dealing with your complaint we will ensure that this is recorded more accurately. Your experienced does not fit with the quality of service we aim to provide and I am sincerely sorry for this. We work closely with South West Ambulance Service and have made improvements in the performance of our NHS 111 service in this area.

I hope that your back pain has improved; once again I am sorry and thank you for letting us know about your experience.

David Foord

Head of Clinical Governance

NHS Direct

  • {{helpful}} of {{total()}} people think this response is helpful

Updates, changes and questions related to this story