NHS Gloucestershire has warned that they will face 'significant pressures' tomorrow (Wednesday) due to strike action. 

Health service leaders are urging people ahead of the industrial action by ambulance workers to only access A&E or 999 if their condition is life threatening or very serious.

Whilst the NHS in Gloucestershire is making plans to minimise disruption as far as they can, they have warned that the latest strike will pose substantial challenges.

The highest priority will be to care for those in most immediate and urgent need.

On Wednesday, life threatening calls and other very serious conditions that may require urgent assessment will continue to be responded to, but other calls will have to be prioritised accordingly, with longer waits expected. 

This week’s strike also includes other ambulance service workers, including call handlers.  

NHS leaders have warned that local NHS services, including hospitals, are already under intense pressure due in large part to a rise in seasonal illness, COVID-19 and related staffing pressures. 

Ahead of industrial action this week, local people are being urged in the strongest possible terms to keep 999 and A&E clear for life-threatening conditions and very serious injuries.

Patients who have a planned hospital operation, procedure or outpatient appointment this week should attend as usual unless they hear from their NHS Trust to advise otherwise.

The local NHS Trusts are asking relatives and carers to do everything they can to work with their staff to get their loved ones home from hospital as quickly and as safely as possible, with additional support if necessary, from local NHS community services or adult social care teams.

Chief Medical Officer at NHS Gloucestershire, Dr Andy Seymour said: “One Gloucestershire health and care partners are working closely together to ensure those in greatest need continue to have access to high quality care this week.  

"However, we need to be very clear that the coming days are going to be incredibly challenging for those providing care and we are going to need the public’s full support as well.

"If it’s not a life-threatening condition or a serious injury, we are urging people to think very carefully about their healthcare options and get advice when needed from NHS 111 and ASAP Glos NHS. Advice will also be available through local NHS social media channels.”