Ambulance crews from the South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) have expressed their gratitude after military personnel were drafted in to help them in their duties during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Paramedics from the NHS Foundation Trust have seen their numbers bolstered by some 36 personnel from the Royal Logistic Corps.

The soldiers received training from SECAmb and will help after pairing up with a SECAmb clinician for a training shift driving ambulances.

The move follows on from SECAmb working with fire crews across its region, with firefighters ready to provide similar support when needed.

News Shopper: Personnel from the Royal Logistics Corps join paramedics during coronavirus. Image: SECAmbPersonnel from the Royal Logistics Corps join paramedics during coronavirus. Image: SECAmb

SECAmb said the military personnel will work on set shifts in line with patient demand.

"Over recent weeks we have been exploring ways in which we can bolster our frontline response to patients during these difficult times," SECAmb Executive Director of Operation Joe Garcia said.

"Following on from our continuing work with our fire services, we are very grateful for this additional support from the armed forces.

"Following a short period of familiarisation training these individuals will be ready to team up with a SECAmb clinician for a shift meaning that we are able to put more ambulances out on the road to respond to our patients," he added.

Colonel Ian Adkins, deputy commander of the South East Joint Military Command meanwhile confirmed that the service members would "assist by driving ambulances and supporting the Trust as it continues to care for the most vulnerable during the region’s response to the pandemic".