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Vital ambulance services must not be stretched too thinly

Editor's Viewpoint

Published 13/11/2015

It is right that protocols exist between the ambulance services in Northern Ireland and in the Republic. These are designed to enable the services to help each other in cases of emergency or when a major incident occurs. It makes sense that such arrangements are in place along the largely rural border.

But the claim by a Sinn Fein councillor in Louth that the mutual aid protocol is being abused should ring alarm bells. He says that northern ambulances attended five cross-border call outs in one day recently. That is stretching resources too thinly and could have dire consequences if a sudden emergency occurred on this side of the border.

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