The money would have been far better spent investing in pay, staffing, services and social care.
Commenting on the new £30m contract awarded by NHS England to St John Ambulance in an attempt to ease pressure on the ambulance service, UNISON ambulance lead Alan Lofthouse said:
“This move is not what an under-pressure NHS needs. It will be about as effective as sticking a tiny plaster on a gaping wound.
“Putting additional non-NHS ambulances on the road without tackling the staffing crisis or the lack of capacity in A&E departments will mean even longer vehicle queues outside hospitals.
“The money would have been far better spent investing in pay, staffing, services and social care, so patients don’t have to wait hours to be seen and then can be sent home safely to recover.”