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Troops deployed in London to help beleaguered NHS during Covid crisis

Picture: Army

More than 200 troops have been drafted in to support the NHS as staff shortages bite hard during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The men and women are being deployed in hospital across London.

The capital has been the epicentre of the Omicron outbreak as cases have soared.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said there are 40 military medics and 160 general duty staff to help fill the gaps as NHS are off ill or self-isolating.

It is expected they will be on duty until the end of January.

In addition, 32 military co-responders are supporting the South-Central Ambulance Service.

They will be aiding ambulance staff until the end of March.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:

“The men and women of our armed forces are once again stepping up to support their dedicated colleagues in the NHS as they work hand-in-hand to protect the nation from Covid-19.

“They have shown their worth time and again throughout this pandemic, whether driving ambulances, administering vaccines or supporting patients in hospital, and they should be proud of their contribution to this truly national effort.”

Patricia Marquis, the Royal College of Nursing’s director for England, said the deployment meant the Government could no longer deny there was a “staffing crisis” in the NHS.

She added: “The Prime Minister and others can no longer be dismissive of questions about the ability of NHS staff to deliver safe care.”


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