One of the busiest days of the year for ambulance staff as nearly 4,400 calls are made

PUBLISHED: 17:48 11 December 2017 | UPDATED: 13:57 12 December 2017

Sunday was one of the busiest days of the year for East of England Ambulance staff. Picture: Casey Gutteridge

Sunday was one of the busiest days of the year for East of England Ambulance staff. Picture: Casey Gutteridge

Archant

Teams in green faced one of the busiest days of the year yesterday when snow covered half of the eastern region.

A spokesman for the ambulance service said: “The public and dedicated East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) staff and volunteers are being thanked for their extensive efforts during the snowy conditions.”

Almost 4,400 calls were received yesterday, making it one of the busiest days in recent years.

Demand increased more than 20% from the same day last year.

It also resulted in the Trust declaring an internal major incident and all available staff responding to 999 calls.

Chief Executive Officer Robert Morton said: “The conditions we experienced yesterday were extreme and we would like to thank the public for being patient with our responses.

“We had to prioritise life-threatening calls and the most seriously ill patients, and our call handlers had to let those calling about less serious incidents know they could wait a very long time for an ambulance and to consider an alternative if it was not a life-threatening emergency.”

The most affected areas for EEAST were Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and West Essex.

Robert added: “Every single member of EEAST has worked incredibly hard and is continuing to do so.

“Some members of staff came in on their days off and others worked many hours on from the end of their shift and responding so compassionately to those who need us most in the community to make sure our patients got the best possible care they could.”

Just before 10am today, the Trust stood down internal major incident status but is still urging the public to take care in icy conditions, check on vulnerable neighbours and choose wisely about which NHS service they require.

For more information about being Winter Wise, visit

http://www.eastamb.nhs.uk/news/eight-ways-you-can-be-more-winter-wise-this-year/1926

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