'Staff are broken, the hospital is full' - queue of 22 ambulances outside Torbay Hospital

Watch: Ambulances waiting outside Torbay Hospital in Devon.Credit: BPM Media

A student paramedic has captured the moment he said he saw 22 ambulances queuing outside a Devon hospital.

He said he waited at the back of the queue at Torbay Hospital last night (3 December) where the ambulances did not move for six hours.

The shocked medic wrote: "Currently at the back of a 22 ambulance queue. No movement in 6 hours. Staff are broken, the hospital is full. This is not sustainable.

"Patients are being affected and so are staff. The NHS in south Devon just broke. There was time to fix this, I don’t think so anymore."

It comes as hospital staff face huge pressures in the region, with reports of long waiting times at emergency departments.

 Torbay Hospital said their emergency department has been under "sustained pressure" for several months now and they apologised to anyone who was affected by the delays.

Ian Currie, Medical Director at Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Currently extreme pressure is impacting on our ability to admit patients in a timely way which means that ambulances are currently waiting to discharge patients and we are not able to see people as quickly as we would like."

He added that the most 'clinically urgent' patients arriving at emergency departments are prioritised, but it shouldn't mean that anyone with less urgent needs will face very long waits.

He continued: “We are asking everyone to think carefully about which service is right for their needs.

"Family and friends of patients can also help by being ready to collect their loved one from hospital when we call, and supporting them when they get home."