Workers bemoan ambulance crew shortages on islands

Workers bemoan ambulance crew shortages on islands

Workers of the National Health Service (ESY) are warning of a shortage of ambulances and staff on the Greek islands at the height of the tourist season.

In an announcement, the national union of public hospital workers (POEDIN) said the number of staff on the islands is not enough to cover the needs of a 24-hour ambulance service.

The shortage was highlighted further on August 19 with the expiration of the contracts of 26 ambulance staff on the islands of Rhodes, Lesvos, Samos, Chios, Kos, Kalymnos and Leros.

“Emergency situations on the islands are being handled by 26 fewer workers at a period when there are thousands of tourists visiting,” POEDIN said.

According to international safety standards, an ambulance needs a minimum of 10 staff to operate efficiently – putting in three shifts per day, seven days a week – yet the popular holiday destination of Santorini has nine, while Myconos and Paros have just eight.

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