December 20, 2022

Yorkshire Ambulance Service – Industrial Action

National ambulance and NHS trade unions have announced two days of strike action. For Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS), the industrial action will take place by GMB members on Wednesday 21 December and Wednesday 11 January. UNISON members are planning to take action on Wednesday 21 December, for 12 hours from midday to midnight (A&E Operations only).  Industrial action will no longer be taking place on Wednesday 28 December.

It is expected that there will be significant disruption to local health services during the periods of action.

It is really important that patients who need urgent medical care continue to come forward, especially in emergency and life-threatening cases – when someone is seriously ill or injured, or their life is at risk. Ambulances will still be able to respond in these situations, but this may only be where there is an immediate risk to life.

There will be fewer ambulances on the roads during industrial action, with the NHS prioritising those with life-threatening needs. As a result patients whose conditions are not life-threatening may not get an ambulance on strike days.

During strike days, it is likely 999 call handlers will be very busy. NHS 111 call centres will have fewer staff, with longer call response times expected across the system. As a result, we are urging anyone with non-urgent care need to first seek help from NHS 111 online.

Local services are exceptionally busy at the moment and staff are working extremely hard under very challenging circumstances. Given how busy hospitals already are and the potential impact of strike action, we would ask the public to help us ensure that hospitals can focus on their sickest patients by seeking alternative support through NHS111 online or by calling NHS 111, where the situation is not life-threatening. NHS 111 is free and they can give urgent advice, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The NHS UK website has more information on when to call 999 and when to go to A&E.

There is a range of other local services available to meet your healthcare needs, including your GP practice. Patients can also get face-to-face appointments for urgent problems and book routine appointments in advance when your own GP practice is closed through the GP Care Wakefield service.

The service is available between 5pm and 9.30pm on weekdays; 9am and 5pm on Saturdays; and 9am and 3pm on Sundays and bank holidays. All you need to do is contact your own practice telephone number, even if it is closed, as your call will then be diverted to GP Care Wakefield.

King Street Walk in Centre, Wakefield, is open seven days a week, 365 days a year, between the hours of 10am and 10pm. You can also call into your local pharmacy for expert advice on many common illnesses such as headaches, sore throats and aches and pains, and there is no need to book an appointment.

For information about a range of local services, including mental health support, please visit the ‘Choose the Right Service‘ page.

The NHS.UK website has more information on when to call 999 and when to go to A&E.


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