Gurkhas step in to support Yorkshire medics

The Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust (YAS) has requested additional support from the British Army to help with crewing non-blue light vehicles.

10 The Queen's Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment (10 QOGLR) has sent 40 soldiers to support YAS clinicians by assisting with the transportation of patients with less urgent needs.

The troops will work alongside YAS colleagues to transfer patients between hospitals, convey the most vulnerable patients for life-saving treatments, and transport patients discharged from hospital.

Nick Smith, YAS Executive Director of Operations, said: “Like all other ambulance, health, and community services across the country, we are experiencing operational pressures.

“Our dedicated staff are doing their best to respond as quickly as possible to all 999 calls, but we acknowledge that some patients are having to wait longer for an ambulance response. As part of our resilience planning, we have always had the option of making a request to the military for help and we have now asked for that assistance."

The Gurkhas have already commenced training with personnel set to be working with the Trust for a number of weeks.

Mr Smith said: “I would like to thank all our hard-working staff and volunteers for their continuing efforts and requesting this additional support means that we can further support our staff and volunteers as they care for our patients during this challenging time.

“We would like to reassure our patients and the public that, in spite of the challenges currently faced, our emergency service remains fully operational and anyone who needs our assistance for life-threatening of serious emergencies should continue to call 999.”

The Army has been supporting our NHS colleagues across the country since 2020 as part of Operation Rescript.