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Island’s emergency services working together to help save lives

Ryde Green Watch fire on call volunteers web
Island’s emergency services working together to help save lives
14 December 2022

Our Ambulance Service and Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service (HIWFRS) launch a Cardiac Arrest Responder scheme to help save lives.

The scheme is the latest collaboration between the two emergency services that will strengthen the Island’s response to a cardiac arrest in the community.

Survival rates from out of hospital cardiac arrest remain consistently low in the UK, with fewer than one in ten people surviving. The aim of this initiative is to have a key role in improving those survival rates.

Director of Isle of Wight NHS Trust Ambulance Service, Victoria White said: “I am thrilled that this initiative is now in a position to go live. Our collaboration will the HIOW Fire and Rescue Service will build on the platform we already have using our ambulance volunteer community first responders.”

By working together the two emergency services will respond  to community cardiac arrests, ensuring a timely qualified, equipped response is made.

Chief Executive, Darren Cattell said: “This is latest example of the strong partnership we have with our emergency services on the Island. By working together we are continuing to build resilience and provide the very best emergency care to our Island community.”

Assistant Chief Officer, Stew Adamson said: “Our firefighters are trained and equipped to provide some medical care at incidents and all of our fire engines carry defibrillators, oxygen, and other lifesaving equipment.

“We work closely with our ambulance service colleagues and have already been helping in this way in Hampshire. 

“If we are in a position to help save a life, it’s right that we should respond if we can.”

The initiative will launch at two of the Island’s responding stations, Ryde Green Watch Firefighters and Shanklin Retained Firefighters. The team of volunteers at the two supporting stations are all Immediate Emergency Care (IEC) qualified and competent to carry out lifesaving first aid skills until the arrival of an ambulance crew.

Launching this week, in the event of a call to a cardiac arrest, the HIWFRS Volunteer Cardiac Arrest Responders, will be deployed where there is need for their support simultaneously with the statutory Ambulance Response.

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