Get involved: Send your news, views, pictures and video by texting SUPIC to 80360 or email us.
Sussex hospitals prepare for surge in emergencies as icy blast continues
Hospitals and ambulance crews are bracing themselves for a surge in patients as icy conditions continue to affect Sussex.
The county’s accident and emergency departments are expected to see a rise in the number of people coming in with breaks and sprains caused by slipping and falling.
The freezing temperatures are also likely to trigger respiratory problems, particularly in the elderly and vulnerable.
Hospitals across Sussex were yesterday able to operate as normal, although there were some disruption earlier in the day as staff battled to get to work.
Hospitals in Eastbourne, St Leonards, Worthing and Shoreham also urged patients with appointments to call first before coming in yesterday (March 12).
However they were later able to start running clinics as normal as conditions improved.
Dozens of staff, including between 80 and 90 at the Royal Sussex and Princess Royal and others in Eastbourne, St Leonards and Worthing, stayed in hospitals overnight on Monday (March 11) as the weather deteriorated so they would be able to be there for their shifts yesterday morning.
South East Coast Ambulance Service reported a busy night on Monday and were supported by charities and volunteers as they battled to reach patients in treacherous conditions.
One pregnant woman had to be taken to East Surrey Hospital in Redhill after her car got stuck in traffic in London Road, Handcross, at around 8pm on Monday.
A paramedic already dealing with another incident nearby was able to treat the woman until an ambulance crew reached the scene.
An ambulance service spokesman said: “We had already been busier than usual before the bad weather hit and the conditions made things very challenging.
“We are grateful for the staff for their dedication and hard work and to those who supported us, which includes the Red Cross, St John Ambulance and the Sussex 4x4 Rescue team.
“Conditions have been improving but we are still asking people to stop and think before calling 999 unless it is a genuine emergency.”
Health bosses are urging people to take extra care in the cold weather.
A spokeswoman for NHS Sussex said: “In these weather conditions it is important people remember to stay inside and keep warm.
“People should only travel if they need to, taking sensible precautions.
“Ask a friend or neighbour to see if you can share journeys, or see if they can pick supplies up for you if they are going out already.
“We should all remember to keep an eye on neighbours and friends as well, particularly the elderly and vulnerable, making sure they are safe and staying warm.
“If you do have an urgent medical need, please consider if you would get the right treatment from your family doctor, a pharmacy or a walk in centre or minor injury unit, before going to A&E or calling an ambulance.
“Often the most appropriate care for you can be just around the corner, and you can be treated quickly and more effectively.”
See the latest news headlines from The Argus:
- Police release pictures of brothers wanted in connection with Hove shooting
- Albion sex trial jury sent out to consider verdict
- Smart return for circus
- M23 northbound near Pease Pottage closed after lorry fire
- Man struck by lorry on A27 in Worthing has died