From BBC Wales today:
Paramedics fear they cannot do their job safely due to being forced to work with the armed forces on ambulances, a union has warned.
More than 100 military personnel were brought in to help the Welsh Ambulance Service cope with Covid pressures.
But the GMB said they provide “very little assistance”, put more pressure on the trained medics and that without action the service will collapse.
However the GMB also said its members are being threatened with suspension or disciplinary action if they raise the problems and “being bullied and forced to split from their regular trained crew partner to crew up with the untrained military”.
The deployments were announced last month, to work as non-emergency drivers on lower priority calls and free up ambulance resources for emergency calls.
But the union says military personnel are being sent to “emergency situations”.https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-59258776
BBC Scotland are not even linking to this story:
So, is all fine in Scotland? There is little being reported but on the 29th September the Daily Record did report:
The problems with the drivers have been confirmed by paramedics trade union Unite just days after they were brought in by Health Secretary Humza Yousaf as waiting times soared.
Paramedics have also warned bringing in the military has actually increased waiting times at some hospitals – as Army drivers drop off large numbers of non-emergency patients at hard-pressed A&Es.
Paramedics also fear patients could be put at “severe clinical risk” as a result of Army drivers being unable to use blue lights.
Last night, Unite’s convener at the SAS Jamie McNamee said: “These drivers can only be sent to non-emergency calls where otherwise patients may be waiting seven or eight hours for a response. But that puts them in the frontline.
“And when they get to the call, things may be different than they expect. It could be they are called out to someone with a severe asthma attack but when they arrive, a clinician realises the patient is having a heart attack.
“In that situation, it is a blue light to the nearest hospital – but the military driver can’t do it because he can’t drive with a blue light and the clinician can’t drive because he needs to remain in the back with the patient.https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/army-ambulance-drivers-cant-use-25092538
BBC Scotland did not pick up on this. They prefer the GMB, in Scotland, that is.
Isn’t is remarkable how little coverage this has had?