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Ambulance service receives over 18 per cent more calls this Christmas

Between Christmas Eve and Boxing Day South Central Ambulance Service received a total of 839 calls, 87 more calls than in 2011, which equates to an 11.6 per cent increase.
However, in the NHS Berkshire West area specifically there were 23.9 per cent more calls during the same period compared to 2011, with 461 reports compared to 372 in 2011.
There was also an increase in calls to the ambulance service between New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, with 588 reports received compared to 548 in 2011, which equates to an increase of 7.3 per cent.
Incidents of fitting or unconsciousness were up by 23 per cent, while assaults were down by 30 per cent during the two periods combined.
Spokesman for the ambulance service, James Keating-Wilkes reminded the public that misuse of the ambulance service costs lives, particularly at Christmas and New Year.
“Winter is traditionally the busiest time for your local ambulance service. Please help us to help you by accessing the service appropriately,” Mr Keating-Wilkes said.
“Misuse of the ambulance costs lives. Please only call 999 in the event of a genuine medical emergency such as a serious accident, severe loss of blood, heart attack, cardiac arrest, stroke, or breathing difficulty.”
For non life threatening injuries or illness residents the public are advised to call a pharmacist, GP, visit a hospital or call the 24-hour service, NHS Direct on 0845 46 47.

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