Skip to main content

EMRTS Service Review

A potential opportunity for a service development for the Emergency Medical Retrieval and Transfer Service (EMRTS Cymru) was considered at the meeting of the Emergency Ambulance Services Committee (EASC) Joint Committee (consisting of health board Chief Executives) on 6 September 2022. Please view our explainer video below for a brief introduction.

The detailed EMRTS Service Development Proposal was received by EASC on 8 November.  EASC Members requested that further scrutiny should take place in a number of key service areas. An impartial and objective scrutiny process is being led by the Chief Ambulance Services Commissioner and the team.  This will be independent of the assumptions and modelling included within the proposal, this is the “EMRTS Service Review”.

The intention is that the approach of undertaking analysis afresh and undertaking formal public engagement will allow us to understand the views and concerns of stakeholders, to agree the rules to be followed when developing options and to agree what is important when comparing different options as part of an open, transparent and robust process.  The process is to explore and maximise the additional activity that could be achieved from existing bases and explore options to reconfigure the service.

We worked with health board engagement, communication and service change leads and with Community Health Council (now Llais) colleagues to develop and agree appropriate engagement materials including an engagement timetable.

Following 14 weeks of public engagement, the first phase of the Emergency Medical Retrieval and Transfer Service (EMRTS) Review  - about how to further improve the air ambulance service in Wales that is provided in partnership – has ended.

The all Wales public engagement, that began in March 2023, has focused on listening to comments, queries and gathering of feedback on how to develop options to further improve the air ambulance service in Wales.

The air ambulance service is delivered in partnership between the Wales Air Ambulance Charity and EMRTS which is part of NHS Wales.

As part of the overall engagement approach across Wales, the Commissioner continued to meet with various stakeholders including elected representatives at national, regional, and local levels, and community group leaders throughout the process, as well using the established governance routes, such as Health Boards’ Stakeholder Reference Groups.

Following Phase 1, the work to develop a range of options - all informed by Phase 1 feedback as well as complementary data modelling  - was shared with the public and stakeholders for comment in a second phase of engagement. 

Phase 2 of the public engagement took place during October and November 2023.  Work has been underway to assess the options developed through an options appraisal process, using the agreed evaluation framework.

Once the options were shortlisted, the Commissioner went back out to the public as Phase 3 (from 01-29 February 2024) for comment.  This helped the Commissioner arrive at a recommended Option, which is then being considered by the Joint Commissioning Committee (that replaced the Emergency Ambulance Services Committee [EASC]) in April 2024.

The Committee meeting details and papers, as well as broadcast/recording link can be found here: JCC Meeting Dates and Papers

A decision has now been made by the NHS Wales Joint Commissioning Committee please view the Recording Online or read the Post Meeting Briefing.