The government has given ambulance services increased choice over how they handle emergency calls following a successful pilot of the NHS Pathways scheme in the North East.
Ambulance trusts will be able to train staff to offer more advice on clinical need. They will use a directory of services to refer them to a local service or to a health professional.
Those that need an emergency ambulance should notice no difference in response from newly trained staff, said the Department of Health in a statement.
Health minster Ben Bradshaw said: ‘It is important that patients get the right treatment at the right time, whether this is a rapid ambulance response or referral to local out of hours services.’
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