Ambulance Industrial Action – Wednesday 21 December 2022
19 December 2022
Update accurate on 19/12/22
NHS ambulance services in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin are working hard to keep people safe during the planned strikes, while delivering the best care possible.
On days where there is strike action, people should only call 999 if it is a medical or mental health emergency (when someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk).
Ambulances will still be able to respond in these situations, but this may only be where there is the most immediate risk to life. Industrial action is due to take place Wednesday 21 December 2022 and Wednesday 28 December 2022.
Many parts of the NHS are likely to feel the impact of the industrial action, either directly or indirectly, and people are being urged to use ambulance services responsibly.
Where the situation is not life-threatening, alternative support will be available through NHS 111 online or through calling NHS 111, and where possible, it is advised that you arrange alternative transport.
When to dial 999
Call 999 for life-threatening emergencies such as:
- Cardiac arrest
- Loss of consciousness
- Fits that aren’t stopping
- Chest pain
- Breathing difficulties
- Severe bleeding
- Severe allergic reactions
- Suspected stroke
- Serious head injuries.
More information about when to dial 999 is available on the NHS England website.
Other health and care services
- Minor injury units – attend your local minor injuries unit for urgent not life threatening conditions and injuries such as sprains, fractures and burns. Find your nearest Minor Injury Unit here.
- Local pharmacies can help with a range of minor illnesses and ailments. See our winter wellness page on how to treat common winter illnesses. Find your local pharmacy here.
- GP services are operating as normal on days when there is strike action. Contact your GP if you have symptoms that will not go away.
Discharge from hospital
Trusts are also asking relatives and carers to do everything they can to work with staff to get their loved ones home from hospital as soon as they are fit for discharge. If you have a loved one in hospital, please be ready to help them home as soon as they are well enough.
Information is also available via our Twitter channel.
What is happening?
Trade unions representing NHS staff are in dispute with the Government over the 2022/23 pay award. A number of the unions have balloted their NHS members to take part in industrial action. As a result members of the RCN are striking on the 15 and 20 December, and members of the GMB, Unite and Unison (ambulance staff) are striking on 21 December and members of GMB (ambulance staff) are striking on the 28 December.
The NHS wants to see a resolution as soon as possible, but pay is a matter for the Government and the trade unions.
What if I need urgent or emergency care?
Anyone who needs urgent care should use NHS111 online or call NHS 111 to be assessed and directed to the right care for them. When someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk, you should seek emergency care in the normal way, by calling 999 or attending A&E.
What do strikes mean for NHS services in my area?
Not every hospital and ambulance service will be affected by strike action. You can check which Trusts are affected on the NHS England website.
What if I have an appointment on a strike day?
Everyone who has an appointment should attend as planned, unless your local NHS provider has contacted you to reschedule. If we have not contacted you, please attend your appointment even if your Trust is affected by strikes.
Will emergency care be affected on strike days?
Emergency care will continue to be available across all parts of the country. It is really important that in emergency and life-threatening cases - when someone is seriously ill or their life is at risk patients continue to come forward as normal.
Will GP services be affected on strike days?
GP services will be running as normal on strike days. Please continue to attend scheduled GP appointments.
When will I find out if my appointment is rescheduled?
The NHS will contact you if your appointment needs to be rescheduled due to strike action. This is likely to be a letter or phone call, and you should be offered an alternative date for your appointment. If we have not contacted you, please attend your appointment as planned.
Is there anything I should do now?
No, the NHS will contact you if your appointment needs to be rescheduled due to strike action.
Should I cancel my appointment on the day of strikes?
No, if we have not contacted you, please attend your appointment as planned.
What should I do if I need an ambulance?
On strike days, patients should only call 999 if seriously ill or injured, and there is risk to life. Ambulances will be dispatched where clinically appropriate.
For all other health care needs support will be available through NHS111 online, via the NHS 111 helpline or at your local GP or pharmacy.
What is considered an emergency?
Patients should only call 999 if seriously ill or injured, or there is risk to life. Ambulances will be dispatched where clinically appropriate.
How long will services be impacted?
The nurses strikes on 15 and 20 December will last for 12 hours and the ambulance strikes on 21 and 28 December will last for 24 hours. However patients should be aware that it may take slightly longer for services to return to normal.
Page last updated 27 January 2023