The South Central Ambulance Service has declared a critical incident via Twitter this Friday. One ambulance trust defines a critical incident as “any localised incident where the level of disruption results in the organisation temporarily or permanently losing its ability to deliver critical services, patients may have been harmed or the environment is not safe requiring special measures and support from other agencies, to restore normal operating functions.”
In charge of the counties of Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire and Oxfordshire, Sussex and Surrey, the service is currently overwhelmed with calls, which is why they are asking the public to only reach them in case of life-threatening emergencies.
“South Central Ambulance Service has declared a Critical Incident due to extreme pressures across our services,” tweeted the service.
“Our staff and volunteers are working extremely hard to respond to calls but the volume is overwhelming.
“Please, please support us by using our services wisely, we’re here for life-threatening illnesses and injuries.
“Thank you so much #HelpUsHelpYou.”
On top of the pandemic, the emergency service is currently slowed by too many calls and long admission queues at the hospital.
NHS bosses highlighted the “risk to patient safety” in the letter which told trusts to end all handover delays and stop using ambulances as emergency department “cubicles” after
two deaths were recently linked to handover delays.
Martin Flaherty, managing director of the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives, said in a statement: “The ambulance sector is experiencing some of the highest levels of emergency activity in its history and this is regrettably leading to delays in the sector’s ability to respond to some patients.”
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“Our pressure on our services, on our emergency department, on our wards, is equivalent to what we would see at the very worst of the wintertime.
“We need our population to work with us, to help us and the other emergency services, including the ambulance service.”
The hospital recently wrote on Facebook: “Our emergency department continues to be incredibly busy and we need your help.”
The Fort News