Helping to save lives in Cambridgeshire
Date: 24 May 2017
A lifesaving partnership between ambulance staff and firefighters in Cambridgeshire has marked its one year anniversary.
The pilot project to support the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) help its most critically ill patients started on 23rd May, 2016.
Since then, Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service firefighters have responded to more than 80 cardiac arrest calls across the county to help save lives when someone is unconscious and not breathing.
On-call crews from March and Ramsey fire stations began co-responding last May, with St Neots and other on-call crews joining the trial in December.
Wendy Risdale-Barrs, EEAST Co-responding Regional Lead, said: “These latest figures are a testament to the excellent collaborative work in Cambridgeshire between our emergency services. I would like to pay tribute to everyone for getting behind the scheme since day one which has made a significant impact on the lives of many.
“Every second counts when someone is in cardiac arrest and getting someone there quickly doing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and equipped with defibrillator greatly increase the chances of survival.”
Simon Newton, Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service Group Commander, said: “The trial has been a great way for us to learn more about how we can use our resources to provide a wider service to the community. The crews involved have been fantastic and worked really hard to ensure the trial has worked, but more importantly to help those in drastic need of assistance.
“This has been a very dynamic project and the flexible approach shown by the teams involved in the trial has made it possible to get this far. Having been co-responding now for a year, we are in a good place to understand how it works and what impacts it has on us as a service and our communities.”
Firefighters are trained in basic life support and equipped with defibrillators and the Trust is providing on-going training to those taking part in the trial.
It has been a year since Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service began attending cardiac arrest calls