Get wise in winter!

Get Wise In Winter
Get wise in winter!
08 November 2012

The word ‘winter’ means something different to everyone – to some it means getting ready for Christmas, to others the possibility of snowy conditions, whilst to the ambulance service and NHS it means getting ready for its busiest period and providing the best possible care for patients.

The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) wants people to ‘get wise in winter’ and enjoy the season rather than spending it ill and ill-prepared. Cutting the number of responses to patients with ailments or conditions that perhaps could have been avoided will mean that the very seriously ill can be seen more quickly.

But it’s more than just 999 – meeting winter head-on rather than hoping ‘it won’t happen to me’ is about learning to save lives, keeping an eye on those needing some extra help this winter, and spreading the word about using all NHS services in the best way possible.

This winter’s campaign will be based on four principles of being winter-wise:

  • Safety for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists in wintry conditions
  • Planning ahead and being resilient
  • Health, wellbeing and help
  • How your ambulance service works

Social media will play a big part in educating the public – in fact, the campaign will launch on Thursday (November 8) with a Twitterthon from one of the Trust’s 999 control rooms. Follow us on @EastEnglandAmb and watch the hashtag #winterwise.

Facebook users will be encouraged to ‘like’ the EEAST page and read it for campaign updates, and Twitter followers will benefit from up-to-the-minute news and info about everything winter.

Director of Emergency Operations Neil Storey said: “We are a busy service each and every day – quiet periods of time are few and far between and we don’t have many days at all where calls drop under 2,000 for the region.
“Add dropping temperatures, accidents in adverse weather, drinking to excess and a lack of understanding of using 999 and we face a greater challenge during winter – in fact, we have already seen a spike in breathing ailments which could be linked to the colder weather. Common sense, planning ahead and thinking about others will help us turn that around .”
Medical Director Dr Pamela Chrispin wants people to consider their long-term health and wellbeing in the winter: “Trying to avoid the sickness bug that’s doing the rounds in your workplace or keeping wrapped up against the cold are good short-term measures.

“But it’s also about ensuring medication for long –term conditions is up to date, getting the flu jab, good hand-washing practice, applying hand gel before using things like a shopping trolley, petrol pump, or cash point , and having the first aid kit up to date.
“That way, people can build up a healthy resistance to whatever winter throws at us and enjoy the season as best they can.”

East of England Ambulance Headquarters
Whiting Way
Sat Nav postcode SG8 6NA