AA offers free breakdown assistance for NHS workers
NHS workers who break down while driving to or from work are being offered free assistance.
The AA said its patrols will help anyone with an NHS ID card, even if they have not paid for cover.
The offer applies to all of the 1.5 million NHS workers in the UK, including cleaners, nurses, porters and surgeons.
More health workers than normal may be tempted to drive to work during the coronavirus pandemic, due to the introduction of free parking at hospitals and concerns about overcrowded public transport.
A dedicated hotline has been set up on 0800 0725 064 which they can call if their vehicle suffers a problem while they are driving to or from work, or at home.
AA chief executive Simon Breakwell said NHS staff are doing “an absolutely vital job” and “the last thing they need to worry about right now is a breakdown”.
He went on: “The idea came from numerous suggestions from our people indicating that the NHS are there for us, so we want to be there for them.”
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said it is “crucial that we put provisions in place” so NHS workers can focus on giving life-saving treatment.
He added: “Offering free breakdown service support will keep health workers moving and is a fantastic example of how organisations are pulling together during this crisis.”
London Ambulance Service chief executive Garrett Emmerson said: “It is vital that all our key NHS people get to and from their essential work every day. It is very reassuring to know that the AA will be looking out for us should we need their breakdown assistance to help us along the way.”
NHS workers can register online at www.theAA.com/nhs to receive a text message with contact details to obtain assistance, but they will still be able to get help if they do not sign up.
The AA has also partnered with the London Ambulance Service to provide technical support to keep its fleet of more than 500 ambulances and 70 fast-response cars on the road.