Ambulance crews thanked for response to increased number of bank holiday weekend emergencies

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Ambulance staff and volunteers have been thanked for their hard work during another busy bank holiday weekend, which saw crews dispatched to two per cent more incidents that last year.

The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) responded to 6,432 incidents between Saturday, May 23 and the end of Monday, May 25, compared to 6,311 last year.

While responses were up this spring bank holiday weekend, the number of calls received reduced by more than six per cent with 7,866 calls this year compared to 8,399 in 2014.

Anthony Marsh, EEAST Chief Executive, said: “I would like to express my sincere gratitude to all staff and volunteers who worked over the long weekend. Bank holidays are always a busy time for us, in the control room and out on the road, but thanks to our dedicated staff and volunteers the Trust continued to provide the best possible care to patients across the six counties we serve.”

On bank holiday Monday (May 25), the Trust was able to reach 88% of the most serious (red one) emergencies – such as cardiac arrests and strokes – within eight minutes. The national target for this performance indicator is 75%.

Dr Marsh continued: “While we attended more incidents over the long weekend we actually received fewer 999 calls than last year. People should not hesitate to call us in a genuine emergency but I’d like to thank members of the public who thought twice before picking up the phone, enabling our crews to reach the most critical patients more quickly.”

County breakdown of responses this spring bank holiday, compared to the same long weekend last year (Saturday-Monday inclusive):

Bedfordshire: 685 (670 in 2014)

Cambridgeshire: 858 (889 in 2014)

Essex: 1,902 (1,935 in 2014)

Hertfordshire: 1,071 (1,034 in 2014)

Norfolk: 1,152 (1,002 in 2014)

Suffolk: 756 (778 in 2014)