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10% paramedic vacancies 'an underestimation'

Richard Webber from the College of Paramedics said the 10% staff shortage uncovered by Labour across England is an underestimation, as some ambulance chiefs are filling some of the posts with less qualiflied care assistants. In an interview with the Times, he said:

Trusts have run short for a number of reasons: pressure and stress is causing people to leave, and there also more opportunities for paramedics than there used to be.

The public are not getting paramedics out treating them in the numbers they should.

The public are not getting paramedics out treating them in the numbers they should. Paramedics have better assessment skills and a wider range of treatments so people with severe illness may not be getting the best care immediately.

– Richard Webber


Staff shortages hit ambulances services across England

Ambulance services across the country are underperforming due to staff shortages, Labour's shadow health secretary said.

Freedom of Information requests by Labour have revealed that one in ten paramedic posts are empty - in London and East Anglia, this figure rises to one in five. The government says an extra 2,000 paramedics have been recruited since 2010.

Political Correspondent Libby Wiener reports.

Whitney Houston's daughter found 'unresponsive' in bathtub

Whitney Houston's daughter has been taken to hospital after she was found unresponsive in a bathtub at her home.

Bobbi Kristina Brown was discovered this morning by a friend and her husband, who gave her CPR until emergency crews arrived at the house in Atlanta.

Bobbi Kristina Brown was discovered this morning by her husband and a friend Credit: Reuters

A spokeswoman for the Roswell Police Department said she was taken alive to North Fulton Hospital in Roswell.

An investigation has been launched.

TV's Miss Marple dies aged 82

Actress Geraldine McEwan, known for playing Agatha Christie murder mystery expert Miss Marple on television, has died aged 82, her family has said.

The actress, who worked with the likes of Laurence Olivier and Kenneth Williams during her career, retired from the role of consultant detective Jane Marple in 2008 after 12 TV films shown on ITV.

Geraldine McEwan has died Credit: PA

In a statement, her son Greg and daughter Claudia thanked hospital staff who looked after their mother when she suffered a stroke last year.

Following a stroke at the end of October and a period in hospital, Geraldine McEwan passed away peacefully on January 30.

Her family would like to thank the staff at Charing Cross Hospital who cared for her incredibly well.

– Geraldine McEwan's children Gred and Claudia

Labour research reveals one in ten paramedic posts empty

Freedom of Information requests by Labour have revealed that ambulance trusts in England have over 1,100 ambulance staff vacancies.

Freedom of Information requests reveal one in ten paramedic posts are empty. Credit: Press Association.

The requests, to the English Ambulance Trusts, showed that there are 1171.97 paramedic and ambulance staff vacancies across England. There are 12,137 paramedics nationally.

The following figures show how many vacancies there are different services across England, based on the FOI requests made by Labour, or on board papers from the trust.

  • London Ambulance Service: 359.79 vacancies
  • North East Ambulance Service: 22.24 vacancies
  • East Midlands Ambulance Service: 20 vacancies
  • West Midlands Ambulance Service: 0 vacancies - West Midlands included 'emergency care practitioners'
  • South East Coast Ambulance Service: 112 vacancies
  • South West Ambulance Service: 140.6 vacancies
  • South Central Ambulance Service: 152.5 vacancies
  • Yorkshire Ambulance Service: 46.93 vacancies
  • East of England Ambulance Service: 284.64 vacancies
  • North West Ambulance Service: 33.27 vacancies


At least 13 people killed in Bangladesh factory fire

At least 13 people were killed and dozens more injured when a fire ripped through a plastics factory in Bangladesh, police in the country have confirmed.

Around 70 workers were inside Nasim Plastic House, in a market place in Mirpur, Dhaka, when the blaze broke out.

The death toll, which includes two women, is expected to rise as rescue teams expect to find more bodies beneath a collapsed wall.

More than two million Toyotas, Fiats and Hondas recalled

More than two million Toyota, Fiat and Honda vehicles made in the United States are being recalled over a fault which could cause airbags to deploy unexpectedly.

The vehicles have already been subject to three previous recalls, but federal safety regulators said a "small number" of cars and vans fixed then had experienced "inadvertent air bag deployments".

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said not all of the vehicles affected were sold in the United States.

The models affected include around 750,000 Jeep Libertys and Jeep Grand Cherokees dated between 2002 and 2004, some 370,000 Honda Odysseys amd Acura MDX models dated 2003 to 2004, and around one million Pontiac Vibe, Dodge Viper, Toyota Corolla, Toyota Matrix, and Toyota Avalon vehicles.

Needlestick injury 'means Ebola could be carried into blood'

A British healthcare worker is currently being monitored for Ebola, after sustaining a needlestick injury whilst treating a patient in Sierra Leone.

Professor Jonathan Ball from the University of Nottingham, an expert in blood viruses and Ebola, said the nature of the injury means the virus could potentially be delivered straight into the bloodstream.

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