The Welsh Ambulance Service has announced that it is drafting in the armed forces to help get medical care to patients as levels of staff sickness and self-isolation create healthcare capacity challenges.

The Welsh Ambulance Service announced on Tuesday that it would be drafting in more than 90 soldiers from the Royal Logistics Corps to assist in driving ambulance vehicles from Wednesday. 

“We’re proud and grateful once again to be working alongside the military in the collective effort against Covid-19,” the service wrote in a tweet. 

Jason Killens, chief executive of the Welsh Ambulance Service NHS, said, “The extreme pressure on our ambulance service in the last couple of weeks has been well documented, and it’s why we’ve taken the decision to re-enlist the military, who did a superb job of assisting us earlier in the year.” 

Later on Tuesday, Welsh Health Minister Vaughan Gething told Sky News that high levels of staff sickness and self-isolating healthcare workers was causing challenges with regards to the country’s capacity to reach patients. 

Gething added that the military personnel were necessary to ensure the ambulance service “can function” amid increasing demand on emergency healthcare. 

British hospitals are coming under increasing pressure as a new, “highly contagious” Covid strain appears to be responsible for soaring Covid-19 cases.

The UK previously called on more than 20,000 military personnel earlier in the year as part of a ‘Covid Support Force’. 

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