Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today warned malicious calls to the Scottish Ambulance Service are putting lives at risk as new figures revealed that in the past five years there have been more than 7,000 malicious emergency calls requiring almost 2,000 hours of staff time.
A freedom of information request by the Scottish Liberal Democrats to the Scottish Ambulance Service revealed that between 2014/15 and 2018/19 there were 7,460 calls classified as malicious, totalling 112,469 minutes or 1,874 hours
Commenting, Mr Cole-Hamilton said:
“The people in our ambulance service are at the absolute forefront of saving lives.
“The service deals with well over half a million calls every year but these figures show that some malicious individuals are conspiring to make their jobs harder than they need to be.
“Anyone who maliciously calls for an ambulance should be ashamed of themselves. Every call handler tied up dealing with a malicious call is one who is unavailable to help save a life elsewhere.
“Our ambulance staff are under huge strain. The Scottish Government must ensure that the Scottish Ambulance Service and other agencies have the support and resources they need to educate people over the dangers that time-waster calls pose.”