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Ambulance documentation of stroke symptoms during the UK COVID-19 ‘Stay at Home’ message
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  1. Graham McClelland1,
  2. Nina Wilson2,
  3. Lisa Shaw3,
  4. Michael Grayling2,
  5. Daniel Haworth1,
  6. Christopher I Price3
  1. 1North East Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust, Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK
  2. 2Biostatistics Research Group, Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
  3. 3Stroke Research Group, Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Christopher I Price, Stroke Research Group, Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear, UK; c.i.m.price{at}ncl.ac.uk

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On 23 March 2020 the UK government urged the public to ‘Stay Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives’ in order to reduce consequences from the COVID-19 pandemic.1 Three large National Health Service (NHS) stroke units subsequently reported a 16% (95% CI 27.2 to 3.2) decrease in the weekly trend for stroke admissions during March–April compared with January–February 2020.2 Other countries have also reported unexpected reductions in admissions of up to 40% during similar lockdown campaigns.3 4 In contrast, one NHS ambulance service described no impact on suspected stroke callouts during the early lockdown interval between 23 March and 19 April 2020.5 However, this metric reflects caller information, which is known to be less reliable than on-scene clinician assessment. To explore an …

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