Ambulance service

Published: 20 December 2022

Declaring a critical incident means resources are focused on those patients most in need, and that SCAS communicates the pressures it is under to the public and health system partners who can provide support where possible.

The pressures are related to continued high demand, with 999 calls being up 50% on last December, and 111 calls up 75% over the same period. There are also issue of staffing levels, and crews being in hospital until they can hand patients to hospital staff which impacts on crews available on the road.

Staff and volunteers work hard to respond to calls and incidents and continue to prioritise patients with life-threatening injuries and illnesses. Some patients who are not in an emergency situation are being assessed by clinicians who give advice and urge them to make their own way to hospital if they do not require an ambulance.

The public is asked to help by using ambulance services wisely and, wherever possible and appropriate, utilising other healthcare alternatives for urgent medical advice and guidance. These include, urgent treatment centres, pharmacists, GPs.

More information about this and industrial action impact on services may be found on the SCAS web site.