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PTS call handler

PTS call handler

A PTS call handler (sometimes known as a patient transport services controller) is a key member of the ambulance services control team. They work in the patient transport service (the non-emergency service part of ambulance service trusts), organising routine transport to take patients to and from hospital appointments and home after discharge.

They might be dealing with requests for transport for the same day, the following day or for up to eight weeks ahead. They are responsible for the accurate recording of patients' details.

They have to ensure that the best possible use is made of resources.

Entry requirements

There are no national academic minimum standards for control room staff, and the different ambulance services vary in their general requirements. However a good general education and keyboard skills will usually be required. Staff working in a multicultural area may be at an advantage if they have the ability to speak another language.


You will be trained in-house, either in a classroom or on the job. Training varies between the emergency and patient transport services. You will learn how to use the switchboard, radio communications and other equipment.

Career progression

There are opportunities to progress to supervisory roles within a control room such as a control room superintendent/ duty officer and later to become a control room manager. Such roles include ensuring that there are adequate resources to deal with emergency calls.

Applying for jobs

All ambulance service trusts in England and Wales advertise on the NHS Jobs website. You could also visit ambulance service trust websites directly and Jobcentre Plus

Please visit the NHS Choices website for details of ambulance service trusts.

Further information

You should contact ambulance services in the area where you want to work to find out about their particular requirements. Details of ambulance services are available from the NHS Choices website.