There is a new joint initiative between South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue (SYFR) and Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust (YAS). It sees firefighters who assist First Responders when emergencies occure. They are dispatched in case of incidents and specific cases of certain life-treatement .
In 2016, firefighters from Rossington, Stocksbridge and Dearne have been dispatched to 358 medical emergencies. Firefighters provided practical help and support until the ambulance vehicle arrived.
Firefighters’ training inculdes basic life support, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and oxygen therapy. So they are able to help practically the majority type of patients. They are equipped with a kit, which includes oxygen and an automated external defibrillator to help patients in a medical emergency such as a heart attack, collapse or breathing difficulties.
When an emergency occur, an EFR is dispatched at the same time as an ambulance and does not replace the usual emergency medical response from YAS. However, their location could be nearer to the scene in those first critical minutes of a medical emergency, delivering life-saving care until an ambulance arrives and increasing the possibility of saving lives.
The Head of Emergency Response, Tony Carlin said:
“Just over a year into this scheme going live, our firefighters are already showing the incredible value they can add to their communities and the role we can play as a fire service in enhancing the work of our emergency service partners and volunteer community first responders. Our role as a fire service will always be to protect our communities and reach and save those who are in danger as quickly as possible. A new statutory duty has made it a requirement for us to work more closely with our blue light partners, and this scheme is a perfect example of how we are already doing that.”