Emergency Ambulance Service national performance reports

What is performance reporting?

Provider performance reports tell a story about how well the service was delivered over the quarter. Information is provided on the type of service delivered, volumes (how much), and to what extent targets were met.

Why do providers report on their performance?

NASO requires providers to report on their performance for several reasons including to:

  • ensure providers are meeting the requirements set out under their Service Agreements
  • understand how well the service is being delivered and look at ways the service can be improved
  • inform the public and Government that services are being delivered as expected for the funding provided
  • ensure services are meeting the public’s needs.

How is the information used?

The information is used to inform:

  • future investment decisions
  • strategic long-term planning in line with Government and providers’ priorities.

Why are we making this information more publicly available?

NASO and emergency ambulance providers are making this information more publically available to improve transparency and openness regarding the quality of the service being delivered across New Zealand and to show how the service is being improved over time.

Where can I get more information?

For more information about the national performance reports contact NASO at [email protected].

For information about St John’s performance visit the performance section of their web site.

When will the summaries be made available on the NASO website?

The reports will be made available three months after the end of each quarter.

What does the national performance report contain?

The report contains:

  • types of services delivered – types of incidents attended (emergency, non-urgent etc.)
  • volumes – of calls and incidents
  • performance against targets:
    • time taken to answer calls
    • abandoned call rates
    • response times.

From 1 July 2017 the content of the reports has been expanded. The reports now include:

  • Performance information breakdown for St John, Wellington Free Ambulance (WFA) and the combined National figures.
  • Expanded information for response times (Purple and Red response colour codes).
  • Total number of incidents by job type (response colour code).
  • Full crewing reporting.
  • Customer experience metrics.
  • Improving Clinical outcomes metrics.
  • Graphed time to answer calls.

The abandoned call rate is no longer included in this report (abandoned calls is a function of the 'time to answer calls' and generally only moves in a range between 0.2% to 0.6%)

What is the colour code response system?

Ambulance Communications Centres use a colour code response system to prioritise the urgency of an incident as follows:

  • purple – immediately life-threatening
  • red – potentially life-threatening or time-critical
  • orange – urgent or potentially serious
  • green and grey – non-urgent (low acuity).

In some places in the national performance reports, the colours are used rather than the description.


Term Definition
Response time Is the time elapsed (measured in minutes and seconds) from when the call arrives in the dispatcher’s queue until the first ambulance resource arrives at or within 200 metres of an incident location or safe forward point.
Ambulance Any motor vehicle, aircraft or vessel:
  1. designed and used principally for the transport of sick or injured persons; and
  2. operated by an ambulance operator.
Safe forward point A safe location near the incident from which the forward operations can be supported.
Incidents Are those calls to ambulance control centres that are processed using the Medical Priority Dispatch System (MPDS) and generate a unique master incident number.
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