East of England Ambulance Service declares 'critical incident' amid NHS pressure

EEAST is one of 24 trusts and the only ambulance service to be named as a pilot site for the new digital scheme.
Bosses at the ambulance trust are urging people to only call 999 for a life-threatening condition or if you have a serious injury. Credit: ITV News Anglia

The East of England Ambulance Service has declared a critical incident as NHS services around the country face unprecedented pressure.

Bosses at the ambulance trust said NHS services in the region were under huge pressure as a consequence of 999 call volumes and hospital handover delays.

The East of England Ambulance Service Trust (EEAST) covers Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire.

It comes as the North East Ambulance Service and South East Coast Ambulance Service have also moved to critical status.

In a statement the EEAST trust said "Declaring a critical incident means we can ensure our resources are focused on patients with the greatest need, as well as allow us to access wider support from our health and care partners.

"Our staff continue to work incredibly hard in challenging circumstances, to respond to calls and incidents as quickly as possible.

"If you need to contact us because of a life-threatening condition or serious injury, then call 999.

"For everything else, we would urge you to please use 111 online, speak to your GP or use a minor injuries centre.”

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