London paramedics will be given body-worn cameras because members of the public keep attacking them.
Bosses at the London Ambulance Service hope that the police-style cameras will reduce the number of attacks on emergency staff, and help bring attackers to justice.
According to its top executive, Garrett Emerson, there has been a “drastic increase” in the attacks on staff in recent years, with 625 assaults in the past twelve months alone.
The majority of those took place in homes medics were called to or in public places, not inside the ambulances.
In a presentation at the end of November, Mr Emmerson said: “There has been a drastic increase in physical assaults against LAS staff and volunteers in recent years.
“Data from 2004 to March 2020 reveals a 72% increase and in the last 12 months an estimated 12 assaults per week, 625 reported physical assaults on staff.”
As a result, bosses agreed in September to roll out the cameras across the whole Trust “as a measure to help reduce the number and impacts of assaults on crews,” he added.
A small number of crews at the service had been involved in a national trial of the cameras, funded by the government.
The trial ended in November, paving the way for the cameras to be rolled out across the Trust.
The dates for the rollout and numbers of those getting the body cameras have not been officially confirmed.