Glasgow tops ambulance 'risky' areas

HUNDREDS of addresses in the Greater Glasgow health area are "risky" for ambulance staff on emergency call-outs, figures show.

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NHS Greater Glasgow And Clyde has 345 "red flagged" addresses, the highest number in Scotland.

In all, 1323 addresses across the country were classed as being risky for ambulances to attend because of violent incidents or threatening behaviour.

More than 300 locations were identified in the NHS Lothian area and 150 in the Lanarkshire health board region.

Neil Findlay, Scottish Labour's health spokesman, said these locations had all been flagged by the Scottish Ambulance Service as being "risky for ambulance crews to attend".

A spokesman for the service said for calls to these addresses, ambulance dispatch staff can request the police attend to give additional support.

But Mr Findlay is calling on ambulance bosses to ensure there are adequate strategies in place to deal with the problem.

He said: "It's shocking that so many addresses across Scotland have been identified as being risky for ambulance crews to attend.

"The Scottish Ambulance Service needs to ensure there are adequate strategies in place to deal with this problem.

"For example, public education campaigns that remind people of the vital role played by emergency workers and the need to support, not harass and hassle them."

A spokesman for the Scottish Ambulance Service said: "The safety of ambulance staff is paramount, which is why the service takes appropriate measures to protect them.

"If any ambulance crew feels their safety may be compromised, they are instructed to hold near the scene and await support from the police, or additional ambulance crews."

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