Busy Christmas for 999 health services

Ambulances were kept busy over Christmas ENGANL00120130613132032
Ambulances were kept busy over Christmas ENGANL00120130613132032
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Ambulance and hospital emergency departments were busier over Christmas than at the same time last year.

Saturday was the busiest day, with East of England Ambulance Service Trust (EEAST) taking 3,380 calls and West Suffolk Hospital’s emergency department dealing with 193 cases, which was only 37 below its record.

An EEAST spokeswoman said: “On Christmas Day, EEAST received 2,743 emergency calls, which is slightly up on the same day last year when we took 2,717 calls.”

The trust received 2,562 emergency calls on Christmas Eve and 2,974 on Boxing Day.

Jon Green, chief operating officer at West Suffolk Hospital, said: “We have been very busy over the past few days, with a higher rate of admissions than we would normally expect.

“Through the year we have seen the number of patients coming to our ED increase, with around five per cent more compared with 2013. We have brought in additional staff and opened extra beds.”

Non-emergency patients are asked to use a GP, pharmacist or NHS 111,