Private ambulance service banned from transporting patients after vehicles were 'visibly dirty'

Equipment, vehicles and premises used by a private ambulance service in Keighley which ferried thousands of patients between hospitals were “visibly dirty”, exposing staff and patients to the “risk of harm”, according to inspectors.

Some of the vehicles used by KFA Medical were “visibly dirty” the report said

The Care Quality Commission took enforcement action to cancel KFA Medical Ltd’s registration, meaning it can no longer legally carry patients or give remote triage, medical advice or treatment.

It followed an unannounced inspection in June, following up on previous inspections in January and March, when the service was suspended due to risks identified around patient safety.

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In the 10 months until January, KFA Medical carried 6,477 patients between two NHS hospitals.

Sarah Dronsfield, CQC’s head of hospital inspection, said there were concerns about the lack of improvements.

She said: “It was concerning that staff did not have the appropriate skills and training to keep people safe from avoidable harm. We were told by the provider that training would not be given until the suspension was lifted, however this did not provide us with assurance that staff would be appropriately qualified to carry out safe care.

“We found that the provider did not have appropriate infection, prevention and control measures in place. Equipment, vehicles and premises were dirty which exposed staff and patients to the risk of harm.”

Ms Dronsfield said the move should sent out a clear message to independent providers that they would act to protect the health and safety of patients.