Factcheck: Will ambulances be too busy to respond to 999 calls?
FALSE: DO NOT SHARE
Soon ambulances won’t be responding to 999 calls.
This is false, SECAmb (where the nurse claims to work) have said this did not come from them and is incorrect.
This voice note claims to be from a UK nurse who has just attended a Public Health England meeting. She claims that due to the health service being inundated with deaths, ambulances will no longer be responding to emergency 999 calls for help from the public.
This is false. The Government has been closely monitoring the spare capacity of NHS services like ambulances, and has been slow relaxing restrictions as this spare capacity has been maintained at all times. The South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Trust (SECAmb), where the nurse claims to work, have said, ‘We are aware of a voice message being shared currently on social media regarding the ambulance response to coronavirus. The alarmist information being shared in the message is not correct. We would urge people to disregard the message and not share it further. In line with our ongoing plans during this challenging time, we are continuing to follow national guidelines regarding the ambulance response and thank the public for their ongoing support in following the government’s advice.’
Many messages like this have appeared on social media from unnamed seemingly reputable sources (e.g. doctors or nurses), claiming to have inside knowledge of what the government and the health officials are going to do next to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Remember to be aware that unnamed and verified sources are unreliable and can be used to add authority to false or misleading rumours. Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms is urged to call NHS 111 and order a test to check whether they are infected