COVID-19: Military moves to support NHS as staff absenteeism rises 59% in a week


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The armed forces are supporting the NHS in different parts of the UK as new data shows hospital staff absenteeism due to COVID has increased by 59% in a week.


Some 200 military personnel are drawn to help the NHS in London, while around 150 personnel will support the North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) from next week, driving ambulances, helping lift patients and providing life support.

It comes as a system-wide major event was declared in Northamptonshire due to COVID-19 by health, public and emergency service leaders.


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The Northamptonshire Local Resilience Forum, which is made up of NHS organisations, local authorities, the Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service and Northamptonshire Police, issued the alert due to “increasing demand on services and staffing levels”.

Forum President, Chief Fire Officer Darren Dovey, said: “Announcing this incident is an essential step to ensure that we are able to share resources where needed which is increasingly important as more employees are able to self-sustain. -Need to isolate.”

In December, London Mayor Sadiq Khan announced a major event due to the rapid spread of the Omicron version across the capital.


Meanwhile, data from NHS England shows that 39,142 NHS staff in hospital trusts in England were absent for Covid-19 reasons on 2 January, up 59% over the previous week (24,632) and more than three times as much at the beginning of December (12,508). ). ,

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Statistics show that one in 25 (4%) NHS staff working in acute hospital trusts is sick or self-isolating due to COVID.

This is based on NHS digital monthly workforce data for September for the 4% Acute Trust (most recently available).


The latest figures show that in north-west England, 7,338 NHS staff in hospital trusts were absent due to Covid-19 on 2 January, a week-on-week increase of 85% from 3,966, while in north-east England and Yorkshire had 8,788. absenteeism, more than double the number a week ago (4,179).

Omicron means more patients to treat and less staff to treat

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