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Volume 36 No. 5

October 2021

DEDICATED TO THE AMBULANCE SERVICE AND ITS SUPPLIERS

Blue Light Services Leading the Way in

Electric Ambulances

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CONTENTS

CONTENTS

Ambulance UK

140 EDITOR’S COMMENT

142 FEATURES

142 Isn’t it about time we standardised on international

defibrillator signage?

144 Drowning

149 NEWSLINE

162 IN PERSON

164 COMPANY NEWS

This issue edited by:

Sam English

c/o Media Publishing Company

Greenoaks, Lockhill

Upper Sapey, Worcester, WR6 6XR

ADVERTISING:

Terry Gardner, Samantha Marsh

CIRCULATION:

Media Publishing Company

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www.ambulanceukonline.com

COVER STORY

PUBLISHED BI-MONTHLY:

February, April, June, August,

October, December

Leading the Way in Electric Vehicle Development

Government has set a clear goal to end the of sale of pure petrol and diesel cars and

vans in 2030. This goal will only be achieved if vehicle manufacturers continue to add

to the vast number of electrified models available, and remain committed to being

exclusively zero-emission by the end of the decade. Blue Light Services Specialist

Vehicles recognises there is no time to waste and with vans already on the market that

are capable of more than 200 miles we are experiencing a sharp increase in enquiries for

all-electric ambulances with particular interest in our PTS offerings.

Blue Light Services have already designed, converted and sold all-electric ambulances

that are operating in private ambulance fleets alongside their diesel cousins, and with

over 60 electric vehicles already confirmed to be built for a variety of clients in early 2022

the necessary momentum required for our industry has already started.

The front cover highlights a Renault Master Z.E. which is equipped with the latest battery

technology allowing for an extensive range of 95 miles (city cycle) between charges.

The second vehicle shown built in partnership with ERS medical has zero tailpipe

emissions and a range of 219/185 miles (city/combined) electric ambulance which saves

4000kg of CO2 emissions per year when compared to a diesel vehicle equivalent driving

10,000 miles per annum, this saving of CO2 per annum is equivalent to 434 gallons of

diesel consumed or £4769 of coal burned. This Electric Ambulance boasts a charging

time of just 45 minutes to reach 80% battery with a DC charge - making it convenient and

practical for continuous use on patient transport journeys.

Johnny Fieldhouse (Director of Blue Light Services) says that for the demand for

all-electric ambulances will be hindered unless hospital trusts demonstrate a serious

commitment to introducing a world-class charging infrastructure where vehicles can be

charged at hospitals in-between patient transfers.

To start your EV project or for further information contact Blue Light Services on:

0208 9658357.

COPYRIGHT:

Media Publishing Company

Greenoaks

Lockhill

Upper Sapey, Worcester, WR6 6XR

PUBLISHERS STATEMENT:

The views and opinions expressed in

this issue are not necessarily those of

the Publisher, the Editors or Media

Publishing Company.

Next Issue December 2021

Subscription Information – October 2021

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139


EDITOR’S COMMENT

EDITOR’S COMMENT

Welcome to the autumnal issue of AUK.

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

“Politics

aside I just

feel its time

to re-think

our value

system and

recognise

the

importance

of health

above

any other

aspect of

our lives.”

I’ve worked in the NHS long enough to remember the miners’ strike, and the first nurses strike. I’m not sure

we had a summer this year, but I feel we are definitely moving to a winter of discontent, no Shakespearian

pun intended. The last year and a half has been horrendous for NHS staff and as I sit here writing this

comment with Winter imminent, I do feel aggrieved at the 3% pay increase followed swiftly with a 1.5%

increase in NI. It may be my age and I understand the economics of the public services but, if truth be told,

I’m struggling to comprehend the logic of the ‘pressure of Covid’ on the NHS this winter when in reality the

pressure is there because there aren’t enough Doctors, Nurses, Paramedics or Allied Health Professionals.

Isn’t it time to think carefully about recruitment and retention to the NHS and whilst many will argue that

a vocation is worth more than money, we still need to at least keep up with price increases. I am truly

saddened when I hear that a Nurse giving her all has to utilise a food bank, or when young people leave

the NHS to find better employment in the private sector. Politics aside I just feel its time to re-think our value

system and recognise the importance of health above any other aspect of our lives.

So, I’ve completed 35 years this year and it’s worth looking back at my introduction to the Sabre Saturn, Neil

Robertson and the S&W defibs that had a Sony Walkman attached to make sure you voiced the protocol

as you applied it. Paramedics were a novelty, we had just two! and there was a clear emphasis on ensuring

your shoes were polished and your cap worn at all times, even in the heat of a resuscitation. They were

simpler times when IPC meant gloves and we only wore Tyvek suits for cleaning the ambulance. Its nice

though to see just how far we’ve come in those years and how opportunities abound for todays ambulance

staff, not forgetting all the aligned jobs from legal, through procurement to digital and innovation. I don’t

think 35 years ago I’d ever have imagined ending up looking at things like artificial intelligence to support

dispatch or video consultation from patient’s living rooms.

So whilst it might be a glum winter ahead, keep up the good work and look forward to better times to come.

Sam English, Co-Editor Ambulance UK

140

For more news visit: www.ambulanceukonline.com


Visit safeguardmedical.com


FEATURE

ISN’T IT ABOUT TIME WE

STANDARDISED ON INTERNATIONAL

DEFIBRILLATOR SIGNAGE?

CHT is calling for continuity and simplicity in defibrillator signage, and

the full adoption of ILCOR AED signage throughout the UK.

In the UK there are currently at least 13 different signage types and

designs being used for a defibrillator. Throughout the rest of Europe, this

has pretty well standardised now on the ILCOR signage. Standardised

ILCOR defibrillator signage

signage means less confusion in a time dependent rescue, and helps ILCOR defibrillator signage:

people instantly recognise locations of equipment.

CHT has called upon all suppliers, councils, RCUK, NHS and also

manufacturers to agree to use the International ILCOR signage in the

UK for defibrillator placement.

www.communityheartbeat.org.uk

www.communityheartbeat.org.uk

The HSE has recommended standard signage for fire, emergency exist,

Isn’t it about time we standardised on international defibrillator signage?

first aid, electrical safety, yet the plethora of signage for defibrillators

makes this a potentially confusing area.

CHT is calling for continuity and simplicity in defibrillator signage, and the full adoption of

ILCOR AED signage throughout the UK.

In international locations, such as airports, which have a statistically

higher prevalence of OHSCA, you would think standard internationally

recognisable signage is important. Yet at Heathrow, London’s premier

gateway, there are multiple signage types, and also mostly hidden or

In the UK there are currently at least 13 different signage types and designs being used for a

defibrillator. Throughout the rest of Europe, this has pretty well standardised now on the

ILCOR signage. Standardised signage means less confusion in a time dependent rescue, and

helps people instantly recognise locations of equipment.

poorly visible, causing potential delays in obtaining a defibrillator. This

contrasts sharply with airports on the continent, such as Athens.

In a study in November 2020, it was shown that most current defibrillator

signage is non-compliant to standards. In addition, it was demonstrated

that the BHF signage was only recognisable by around 20% of the

The HSE has recommended standard signage for fire, emergency exist, first aid, electrical

safety, yet the plethora of signage for defibrillators makes this a potentially confusing area.

population compared to over 96% for the ILCOR signage (Study by CHT

of 949 respondents).

“The study showed that the UK lags far behind other countries in defibrillator

In international locations, such as airports, which have a statistically higher prevalence of

OHSCA, you would think standard internationally recognisable signage is important. Yet at

Heathrow, London’s premier gateway, there are multiple signage types, and also mostly

hidden or poorly visible, causing potential delays in obtaining a defibrillator. This contrasts

sharply with airports on the continent, such as Athens

signage, and in a stressful situation, ease of recognition is important. The European

Resuscitation Council has made positive statements about standardisation on

the ILCOR signage to avoid such confusion, particularly in areas where there

is international travel, such as airports, conference centres, and shipping”.

Says Martin Fagan, National Secretary of CHT. “This is about saving lives”.

Defibrillator

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

Heathrow Athens

(Photo – Heathrow Terminal 2 for international travellers, vs Athens. In terminal 2 there are 3 different signage types, and no sign of the

Heathrow defibrillator!) Terminal 2 for international travellers, vs Athens. In terminal 2 there are 3 different signage types, and no sign of the defibrillator!

142

In a study in November 2020, it was shown that most current defibrillator signage is noncompliant

to standards. For further In addition, recruitment it vacancies was demonstrated visit: www.ambulanceukonline.com

that the BHF signage was only

recognisable by around 20% of the population compared to over 96% for the ILCOR signage


FEATURE

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In the knowledge that conferences and exhibitions may be difficult to attend we are delighted to offer you

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Head Injuries - Dr Jonathan Hanson

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Major Incidents - JP Loughrey

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Volume 35 No. 5

DEDICATED TO THE AMBULANCE SERVICE AND ITS SUPPLIERS

October 2020

Discover the Quantum

DIFFERENCE

THE Prehospital Blood &Fluid Warming Solution

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A Resource for all involved in the Teaching and Practice of Resuscitation

Volume 2 No. 2

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143


FEATURE

DROWNING

Adam Gent

To begin with, lets just forget “near-drowning”, “dry drowning”, “wet

drowning”, “freshwater drowning”, “saltwater drowning” and “secondary

drowning”. (1)

These terms are outdated and no longer accepted by The World

Health Organization (2), the United Kingdom Resuscitation Council (3),

International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (4) , the Wilderness

Medical Society (5) , the International Lifesaving Federation (6), the

American Heart Association (7) who all discourage the use of these

terms.

Unfortunately, these terms still slip past the editors of major medical

journals, allowing their use to be perpetuated. These terms are most

pervasive in the nonmedical press and social media to add an illusion of

gravitas, where the term drowning seems to be synonymous with death.

The currently accepted definition of drowning from the World Congress

on Drowning (8) is:

“Drowning is the process of experiencing respiratory impairment from

submersion or immersion in a liquid.”

Key to this are:

Sudden immersion in cold water causes an immediate fall in skin

temperature which triggers several body reflexes (9) collectively (and

annoyingly) known as the “cold-shock” response, and they last for

just the first few minutes after falling in.

The “cold-shock” responses include:

1) instantaneous gasping for air

2) sudden increase in breathing rate

3) sudden increase in heart rate

4) sudden increase in blood pressure

5) dramatic decrease in breath-holding time (from around 60

seconds to just 20-25 seconds (10).

A combination of gasping and a decreased ability to hold ones

breath causes the casualty to inhale water. And this is the

fundamental cause of drowning – respiratory distress.

Inhaling water appears to cause laryngospasm in the first instance

(although this is debated) but real problem occur when water enters

the lower airway, in particular the alveoli; only a small amount of

water is required to cause significant problems – less than 4ml/kg

(11, 12).

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

• Drowning is a process, not the end result. The definition of drowning

does not include death.

• There must be respiratory impairment. If a casualty is rescued from

the water with no respiratory distress, they did not drown or ‘near

drowned’, they were simply rescued.

• Submersion occurs where the whole body is submersed, including

the airway. Immersion is where the body is within a liquid but not

covering the airway.

• Drowning is limited to liquids. Casualties submersed in powders

(which behave as free flowing fluids) are asphyxiated.

Once it is determined a drowning incident has occurred, there are 3

possible outcomes:

• Mortality (death)

• Morbity (illness or injury)

• No morbidity

Drowned casualties either die as a result of respiratory impairment, are

rescued with consequential illness or injury following their respiratory

impairment or have no lasting illness or injury.

The Process of drowning

Stage 1: Cold water Immersion Response (0-2 minutes):

• Regardless of the salinity of the water, the inflammatory response

leads to increased permeability of alveoli capillary membrane and

exacerbates fluid, plasma and electrolyte shifts into the alveoli

resulting in pulmonary oedema leading to decreased oxygen and

carbon dioxide exchange and some bronchospasm.

• Water in the alveoli also causes surfactant washout and

dysfunction and leading to reduced lung compliance and alveoli

collapse.

The fundamental cause of death from drowning is hypoxia, leading to

arrhythmias and cardiac arrest.

It is or this very simple reason that lifejackets and PFD save lives by

keeping the airway above the water during the first few minutes of

uncontrolled breathing.

Shallow Water Blackout

A combination of inhaled water and hyperventilation might, at this

stage cause shallow water blackout:

Ordinarily as we hold our breath our oxygen levels are decreasing

whilst our carbon dioxide levels are increasing. The desire to

breathe is triggered by elevated CO2 levels which usually occurs

before our O2 levels drop below a particular threshold at which point

we go unconscious or ‘blackout’.

144

For more news visit: www.ambulanceukonline.com


FEATURE

very cold water this can take over an hour to achieve. If the

casualty was not wearing a life jacket of PFD, it is likely they died

of drowning rather than hypothermia. If the casualty’s airway is

protected by a life-jacket and they are breathing normally, they

are not a Drowned casualty, they are a hypothermic casualty and

should be treated as such.

To rescue or not?

National Operation Guidance decision tool (14) based on the work

of Dr Mike Tipton (15) is a model is designed to give casualties

every reasonable chance of rescue and resuscitation and is

balanced against the risk of harm to responders when carrying out

rescues.

Image source: Wikipedia. CC BY-SA 4.0, File:Shallow water blackout

diagram 1 revised.svg

If the casualty has been hyperventilating, they have a normal amount

of oxygen in their blood stream but vastly reduced CO2 levels. As

they attempt to hold their breathe, they reach the low 02 threshold

of blackout before their raising C02 levels have triggered a desire to

breath.

The length of time submerged and the temperature of the water are

the two main factors determining survivability; generally, the longer

a casualty is submerged and the warmer the water, the lower the

chances of survival. Other factors affecting survivability include the

age and/or size of the casualty, as smaller and/or younger people

can survive longer than larger people or adults.

1. Start The Clock

The main factors are the length of time the casualty has been

submerged and the water temperature. It is not possible to know

for certain when a casualty became submerged, so the clock

should start when the first attendance arrives on scene. It should

not be assumed that the person has been submerged for longer

than this.

2. Risk Assess

A risk assessment should balance the likelihood of casualty

survival and the likelihood and severity of harm to rescuers.

The decision will consider whether an immediate rescue can be

started or if one should await specialist resources.

Image source: Wikipedia. CC BY-SA 4.0 File:Shallow water blackout

diagram 2 revised.svg

3. At 30 minutes

further Risk Assessment should be considered given the reduced

likelihood of survival against the danger to rescuers which may

be increased (darkness, cold, exposure, fatigue, changing tides

or river levels).

Stage 2: Functional Disability (2-30 minutes)

If the casualty has survived the ‘cold-shock’, rapid cooling of the

muscles reduces contractility preventing normal muscle movement;

the casualty may be unable to swim or may have lost manual dexterity

preventing them from grasping rescue lines or ordinarily climbing out.

It is this loss of muscle control which is why drowning may not appear

ass drowning:

1. Except in rare circumstances, drowning people are physiologically

unable to call out for help due to uncontrolled breathing.

2. A drowning casualty may not wave for help, favouring suing their

arms to keep their airway above the water.

Stage 3: Hypothermia (> 30 minutes).

After prolonged exposure, the casualty will become hypothermic.

Unconsciousness can be expected around 30-32oc but even in

If the water is ‘icy-cold’ (below 7oc) the casualty should be

considered survivable, although the likelihood of survival reduces

as time passes. If not, the operation should move to recovery of

the body, if safe.

4. At 60 minutes

If rescue operations have continued at 60 minutes a further

assessment should be made. If the water is ‘icy-cold’ and

the casualty is known to be young and/or small they should

be considered survivable, although again their chances are

further reducing as time passes. The risk assessment should be

revisited to decide if rescue should continue or if the incident

should switch to body recovery.

5. At 90 minutes

After 90 the decision should be taken to switch to body recovery

because the circumstances are regarded as no longer survivable.

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145


FEATURE

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

Image source: National operational Guidance: Water Rescue and Flooding”. National Central Programme Office.

https://www.ukfrs.com/pdf/print/node%3A20802 Accessed on 9th January 2021

146

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FEATURE

Rescue

• Avoid entry into the water whenever possible. If entry into the water is

essential, use a buoyant rescue aid or flotation device.

• Remove the victim from the water and start resuscitation as quickly

and safely as possible.

• Cervical spine injury is uncommon in drowning victims (approximately

0.5%). Spinal immobilisation is difficult in the water and delays

removal from the water and adequate resuscitation of the victim.

• Consider cervical spine immobilisation if there is a history of diving,

water slide use, signs of severe injury, or signs of alcohol intoxication.

• Despite potential spinal injury, if the victim is pulseless and apnoeic

remove them from the water as quickly as possible (even if a back

support device is not available) whilst attempting to limit neck flexion

and extension.

• Try to remove the victim from the water in a horizontal position to

minimise the risks of post-immersion hypotension and cardiovascular

collapse.

Ventilation (3)

• Prompt initiation of rescue breathing or positive pressure ventilation

increases survival. If possible supplement ventilation with oxygen.

• Give five initial ventilations as soon as possible.

• Rescue breathing can be initiated whilst the victim is still in shallow

water provided the safety of the rescuer is not compromised.

• If the victim is in deep water, open their airway and if there is no

spontaneous breathing start in-water rescue breathing if trained to do so.

• In-water resuscitation is possible, but should ideally be performed

with the support of a buoyant rescue aid.

• If normal breathing does not start spontaneously, and the victim is <

5 min from land, continue rescue breaths while towing. If more than

an estimated 5 min from land, give rescue breaths over 1 min, then

bring the victim to land as quickly as possible without further attempts

at ventilation.

Regurgitation (3)

• Expect the casualty to vomit.

• If regurgitation occurs, turn the victim’s mouth to the side and remove

the regurgitated material

• There is no need to clear the airway of aspirated water as this is

absorbed rapidly into the central circulation.

• Do not use abdominal thrusts or tip the victim head down to remove

water from the lungs or stomach.

Chest compressions (3)

• As soon as the victim is removed from the water, check for breathing.

If the victim is not breathing (or is making agonal gasps), start chest

compressions immediately.

• Continue CPR in a ratio of 30 compressions to 2 ventilations.

• Most drowning victims will have sustained cardiac arrest secondary to

hypoxia. In these patients, compression-only CPR is likely to be less

effective and standard CPR should be used.

Post Rescue Care

After Drop

A phenomena known as “After Drop” can occur as a result of aggressive

rewarming; peripheral vasodilation can lead to a redistribution of blood

and a drop in core temperature. This can occur during treatment or

even after recovery. This can be prevented by moderated warming

techniques; If the casualty has vital signs, is insulated and immobile,

there is no rush to actively warm them.

Curcum Rescue Collapse

Particularly evident in immersion hypothermia casualties, ‘Curcum

Rescue Collapse’ has been attributed to the aggressive repositioning

of the casualty from a floating horizontal position to vertical as they

were winched out of the sea using a hoist. Standing up quickly can

cause orthostatic hypotension; a drop in blood pressure as the vascular

system cannot constrict fast enough in the lower limbs and abdomen

to squeeze oxygenated blood up to the brain; this is noticeable by the

‘head rush’ or feeling of light-headedness as the brain is momentarily

deprived of oxygen.

Combined with the immediate loss of hydrostatic pressure which was

being exerted on the body whilst the casualty was immersed, this

drop in blood pressure can reduce cerebral perfusion to the point of

unconsciousness and cardiac perfusion to the point of cardiac arrest.

Both immersion and severely hypothermic casualties are now rescued

horizontally and as such, should remain in this position until rescue.

References

1. Hawkings JC, Sempsrott J and Schmidt A (2016) “Drowning in a Sea of

Misinformation: Dry Drowning and Secondary Drowning” Emergency medicine

News. https://journals.lww.com/em-news/blog/BreakingNews/pages/post.

aspx?PostID=377 Accessed 19th January 2021

2. https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/drowning

3. UK Resuscitation Council (2019) “Cardiac Arrest in Special Circumstances” in

Advanced Life Support Guidelines. Ch 12. 113:142

4. Idris AH, Berg RA, Bierens J, Bossaert L, Branche CM et al (2003)

“Recommended Guidelines for Uniform Reporting of Data From Drowning”.

Circulation. 108[20]:2565

5. Schmidt AC, Sempsrott JR, Hawkins SC, Arastu AS, Cushing TA, Auerbach PS. (2016)

“Wilderness Medical Society Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Treatment of

Drowning”. Wilderness and Environmental Medicine. June;27(2):236-51.

6. Szpilman D, Pearn J, Queiroga AC (2019) “Medical Position Statement MPS

22 – Research Needs for Drowning”. International Lifesaving Fderation Rescue

Commission 28/08/2019. https://www.ilsf.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/

MPS-22-2019-Research-Needs-for-Drowning.pdf Accessed 19th January 2021

7. American Heart Association (2005) “Drowning”. Circulation. 112(2) Supp. 13.

IV-133-IV-135.

8. International Lifesaving (2015) “World Conference on Drowning Prevention 2015

– Malaysia: Program and Proceedings”. ILS. https://www.ilsf.org/wp-content/

uploads/2018/11/WCDP2015_ProgramProceedingsLR.pdf Accessed 19th

January 2021

9. Datta A and Tipton M (2006) “Respiratory responses to cold water immersion:

neural pathways, interactions, and clinical consequences awake and asleep”.

Journal of Applied Physiology. 100:6, 2057-2064

10. Giesbrecht G. (2000) “Cold stress, near drowning and accidental hypothermia: A

review”. Aviation, Space, and Environmental Medicine. 71. 733-52.

11. Matthew JA. (2016) “Submersion and Diving-Related Illnesses”. In: David S.

(eds) Clinical Pathways in Emergency Medicine. Springer, New Delhi.

12. Schmidt AC, Sempsrott JR, Hawkins SC, Arastu AS, Cushing TA, Auerbach PS. (2016)

“Wilderness Medical Society Practice Guidelines for the Prevention and Treatment of

Drowning”. Wilderness and Environmental Medicine. Jun;27(2):236-51.

13. Vittone M and Francesco A. (2006) “Drowning doesn’t look like drowning”.

On Scene – the Journal of of U. S. Coast Guard Search and Rescue. Fall. P.14.

https://mariovittone.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/OSFall06.pdf Accessed

19th January 2021

14. National operational Guidance: Water Rescue and Flooding”. National Central

Programme Office. https://www.ukfrs.com/pdf/print/node%3A20802 Accessed

on 9th January 2021

15. Tipton MJ, Golden FS. (2011) “A proposed decision-making guide for the

search, rescue and resuscitation of submersion (head under) victims based on

expert opinion”. Resuscitation. Jul;82(7):819-24

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147


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NEWSLINE

WMAS

Jo Gideon MP

officially opens ERS

Medical’s West

Midlands site

National health and social

care transport company ERS

Medical officially opened its

Campbell Road site in Stokeon-Trent

on 17th September,

with Jo Gideon MP for

Stoke-on-Trent Central as the

honorary guest. Adding to

the company’s widespread

national coverage, this site

further expands ERS Medical’s

presence in the West Midlands,

servicing a non-emergency

patient transport contract for

Staffordshire CCGs and a

high-dependency and nonemergency

patient transport

contract for University

Hospitals North Midlands NHS

Trust, respectively.

The site’s formal opening was

conducted by Jo Gideon MP who

was given a behind the scenes

tour of the Campbell Road site

and shown the vehicles being

used to transport patients. Jo

also got an opportunity to talk

to ERS Medical colleagues

and learn more about the

service being provided for the

contracted regions.

She said, “It is great to get to

know ERS Medical who will be

providing a non-emergency

transport service to many people

in Stoke-on-Trent Central. By

bringing their service to our

region, they have also helped

protect around 200 jobs while

creating further employment

opportunities in the patient

transport sector. It’s important to

have specialist providers like this

who are progressive in supporting

our NHS with the service they

deliver. I’ve enjoyed finding out

more about ERS, looking at their

vehicles and meeting their team.

It is my great pleasure to welcome

them to the region and officially

open their new site.”

Andrew Pooley, ERS Medical’s

Chief Executive Officer, said: “We

were delighted to welcome Jo

to our Campbell Road site for

the formal opening event. Our

new site is home to around 200

colleagues and houses around

50 patient transport vehicles. A lot

of work has gone in to regenerate

and develop the building, making

it specifically suitable to service

our contracts in the region. It was

our pleasure to share the details

of how we work with Jo and give

her an insight into our operations.”

ERS Medical’s Campbell Road

site is one of its three new bases

in the West Midlands.

SCAS

South Central

Ambulance Service

shortlisted for NHS

Trust of the Year

South Central Ambulance

Service NHS Foundation Trust

(SCAS) has been shortlisted

for NHS Trust of the Year

in the HSJ Awards 2021 in

recognition of the contribution

made by the organisation and

its staff to regional, national

and global healthcare.

The award recognises trusts

which are offering excellent

patient-centred care built on

strong engagement between

clinicians within and outside of

an organisation and takes into

account the effects of one of the

most challenges years since the

NHS was formed.

Among the areas of focus for

the judging panel were initiatives

which deliver performance

against targets, clinical quality

and safety, as well as how

trusts have managed their way

through the pandemic along

with financial pressures, staff

wellbeing and integrated care.

In recent years SCAS has

taken a leading role in the

delivery of regional healthcare

by shaping and defining

emergency and urgent care

services and positioning itself

as a ‘care navigator’ for the

needs of patients through close

collaboration with partners.

Other service transformation has

included a pioneering initiative

to help patients receive the

right treatment more quickly

– the urgent care pathways

project – which has so far

seen more than 30,000 people

avoid unnecessary transfers to

emergency departments.

The project, established in

2019, sees ambulance service

clinicians take a leading role in

assessing and treating patients

over the phone or in their homes

when handling 111 or 999 calls

and determining their next

destination for ongoing care.

It has led to many patients

being treated at home, referred

onto their GP, transported to a

treatment centre or admitted

directly into a specialist hospital

service covering medical,

surgical, paediatric, respiratory,

frailty or mental health needs

– by-passing busy emergency

departments.

As the NHS 111 provider for the

South Central region, SCAS has

also led the successful rollout

of NHS 111 First, a triage and

booking system for emergency

departments to help manage

demand and capacity at

hospitals across the region.

In addition, SCAS took on

a significant national role

establishing COVID Response

Services on behalf of NHS

England including a dedicated

arm of NHS 111 – the COVID

Clinical Assessment Service

(CCAS) – made up of GPs,

This has included the

SCAS-led development and

implementation of integrated

urgent care models which

facilitate enhanced clinical

guidance in areas such as

mental health, maternity and

dental care via NHS 111,

demonstrating further expansion

from the traditional model of 999

ambulance care.

nurses and pharmacists to help

manage the needs of patients

with COVID symptoms.

During 2020, SCAS also

pushed ahead with its launch

of a healthcare consultancy

initiative in India – the first NHS

partnership of its kind in the

country – to improve healthcare

provision and ambulance

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Leading the Way in Electric Vehicle Development

ERS Medical Debuts First Electric Ambulance

ERS Medical debuted its first Electric Ambulance at this year’s

Emergency Services Show. Built by Blue Light Services, the zero tailpipe

emissions patient transport vehicle is the first in ERS Medical’s fleet,

paving the way for the company’s cleaner and greener transport vision.

With a range of 219/185 miles (city/combined), the electric ambulance

saves over 4000kg of CO 2

emissions per year when compared to a

diesel vehicle equivalent driving 10,000 miles per annum. This saving of

CO 2

per annum is equivalent to 424 gallons of diesel consumed or 4769

pounds of coal burned.

The electric ambulance boasts a charging time of 45 minutes to reach

80% battery with a DC charge – making it convenient and practical for

continuous use on patient transport journeys.

UK’S First Electric Patient Transport Ambulance

Working in Partnership BLS and HATS developed the first electric

Patient Transport Ambulance into the UK market. The vehicle is the

successful culmination of a year-long project involving many people

and departments across both companies. It’s just one element of a

broader range of initiatives that HATS is undertaking, aimed at reducing

our carbon footprint: especially in London where HATS are the largest

provider of transport services in this sector. The vehicle joined HATS

multi-service fleet of over 800 vehicles in early February 2021.

Interior features of the vehicle include a hygiene station, a wipe clean

interior, a twist and recline seat for the passenger, two oxygen pipe

outlets situated in the off and near side of the interior cabin, a cabinet for

storage of essential medical equipment and a wheelchair restraint that is

built into the wheel arch for a streamlined look.

These two all-electric vehicles converted by Blue Light Services required

a major re-think of the design and materials used in the conversion to

ensure the vehicles were as light as possible to ensure the range of the

vehicles could be maximised. The impressive end result could have only

been achieved by working collaboratively with our clients and this really

has been a ‘team effort’.

The vehicle, a Renault Master Z.E. is equipped with the latest battery

technology, allowing for an extensive range of 95 miles (City cycle).

Made by Renault at their Cléon plant, Northern France, the vehicle uses their

latest 57-KW Master Z.E. Powertrain, allowing HATS to transport patients

safely and in comfort, as well as delivering a significant positive impact on

the environment, as it produces zero noise and zero tailpipe emissions.

On the vehicle’s introduction to the HATS Fleet, HATS Director of Fleet

Services, Karl Bailey commented: ‘The introduction of this new Electric

Ambulance is a significant moment, and we are hugely excited about

how it can positively impact our operation, as we look to lessen the

impact that our services have on the environment.

HATS and BLS have just agreed terms on a further 20 Renault Masters

ZEs and further 100 patient transport vehicles for the first quarter of 2022.


NEWSLINE

services in the south-eastern

coastal region of Andhra

Pradesh.

a wonderful achievement for

everyone involved to make the

shortlist.

i-view

SCAS has also been shortlisted

in the Military and Civilian

Health Partnership category

alongside the Ministry of

Defence for the work of

Military Co-Responders who

work with SCAS clinicians to

respond to emergencies in their

communities.

A total of 160 MoD volunteers

operate 13 blue light ambulance

response cars across the South

Central region, volunteering an

average of 650 hours at more

than 140 incidents a month –

bolstering the service at times

of need.

“I want to say a personal thank

you to all of our staff and

volunteers for helping us get

there – each and every one

of them should be immensely

proud of the role they have

played in achieving this

recognition.”

HSJ editor Alistair McLellan

said: “On behalf of all my

colleagues I’d like to take this

opportunity to congratulate

SCAS on being nominated in

the categories of Trust of the

Year and Military and Civilian

Health Partnership in this year’s

HSJ Awards.

Among the other shortlisted

entries to involve staff at SCAS

are Portsmouth Hospitals

University NHS Trust’s project to

automate ambulance handovers

for faster, safer and less

stressful patient information

processing and Southern

Health NHS Foundation Trust’s

NHS 111 mental health crisis

pathway across Hampshire and

the Isle of Wight.

These feature in the Driving

Efficiency through Technology

and Mental Health Innovation of

the Year categories respectively.

“The applications we receive

always present our panel of

judges with a very difficult task

as the standard is unfailingly

high and the breadth of

innovation and passion for

patient care is always so

inspiring.

“This year we really have been

overwhelmed with the level

of entries, particularly when

set against the backdrop of

the COVID-19 pandemic and

the huge challenges faced

by our health and social care

workforce.”


Single-use

No reusable components

Fully disposable

No reprocessing

Minimises the risk

of cross contamination

Will Hancock, Chief Executive

of SCAS, said: “We are thrilled

to be shortlisted for these

distinguished national awards,

particularly as the Trust of Year

encompasses all of the work

we have been doing and our

partnerships – including with

the military and neighbouring

trusts – are so valuable to us

and our patients.

“This recognition really does

reflect the collaborative efforts

and dedication of colleagues

across SCAS and within our

partner organisations and it is

More than 1,000 entries were

submitted for this year’s HSJ

Awards, with 205 organisations,

projects and individuals making

it to the final shortlist. SCAS is

the only ambulance service and

one of only nine trusts in the

country to make the Trust of the

Year shortlist.

The full list of nominees for the

HSJ Awards 2021 can be found

on https://awards.hsj.co.uk/

shortlist-2021. Winners will be

announced during a ceremony

at Evolution in London on 18

November.

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151


NEWSLINE

Why do some people

get Covid worse

than others? Expert

reveals breakthrough

research

The number of Covid cases in

the UK has risen 12% this week,

but while some people may be

hospitalised, others will suffer

little more than a loss of smell.

London Medical Laboratory

says new research is now

revealing everyone’s immune

system is as unique as their

fingerprint.

Dr Quinton Fivelman PhD, Chief

Scientific Officer at London

Medical Laboratory says over 82%

of UK adults have now received

two jabs, but that doesn’t mean

everyone will be saved from the

worst effects of the virus. New

research is revealing why some

Covid patients may still die from

the disease, while others barely

know they have had it.

Dr. Fivelman has authored the

White Paper ‘Has your vaccine

worked? Are you immune to

Covid-19?’. He says that, though

the number of deaths and

hospitalisations has reduced

significantly for fully vaccinated

people, new research has

determined that everyone’s

immune system is unique, and

some individuals will still become

very ill with the disease.

Says Dr Fivelman: ‘Everyone’s

immune system is different.

Our antibody testing has shown

everyone responds differently to

vaccinations. Some people create

a very effective immune response,

while others fail to do so.

‘We now believe that everyone’s

antibody profile is as unique

as their fingerprint. Exactly how

many different antibodies are

in our blood at any one time

was previously unknown; many

scientists estimated it to be over

several billion. In fact, we now

know most people, whether sick

or well, have just a few tens to

hundreds of distinct antibodies

present at high concentrations.

‘London Medical Laboratory’s

own tests have revealed a

growing number of people who

have been jabbed now have

lower values (50 to 500AU/ml) of

antibodies. If someone takes a

test and their score is low, their

unique immune system may not

have responded as well as other

peoples’ to the vaccine, and

their antibody levels may have

significantly declined over time.

That means they may be more

susceptible to the virus as time

passes.

‘Our findings are supported by

new research from Professor

Albert J.R. Heck, Professor of

Chemistry and Pharmaceutical

Sciences, Utrecht University.

Using mass spectrometry, his

team measured antibody profiles

in about 100 people, including

Covid-19 patients and people

receiving different Covid vaccines.

They did not find the same

antibodies in any individuals,

even if they had received the

same vaccine. The team found

that, even though the differences

in antibodies are small, it

appears that this can have a

significant impact. If someone

makes antibodies that are less

effective at killing the disease,

then they may suffer more severe

symptoms, or catch Covid again

within a short time.

The results also showed that

every individual’s concentrations

of these antibodies changed in

a unique way during illness or

after a vaccination. This certainly

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NEWSLINE

helps to explain why some people

become more ill from Covid-19

than others.

We already know that the jab

doesn’t work for everyone. 1

in 100 fully vaccinated people

fail to develop any antibodies

at all after vaccination. That

means that, even if every UK

adult is vaccinated, half a million

adults will have no protection

whatsoever, and not even realise.

Identifying those people is crucial,

which is why widespread antibody

testing is vital.

‘If anyone is concerned about

their own immune response to the

jabs and how well they continue

to produce antibodies, the new

generation blood tests we offer

are highly accurate, quick and

simple to carry out, either in their

own home or at a clinic. These

tests are available privately for

those who don’t qualify for the

Government’s new limited testing

programme.

‘For the latest information about

the level of protection vaccinations

offer against Covid-19, see

London Medical Laboratory’s

new White Paper at: https://www.

privatecoronavirustests.com/

page/vaccine-immunity

Object Thrown At

Ambulance On

Emergency Call Out

An ambulance crew on an

emergency call for a patient

with a suspected stroke had to

pull over after an object was

thrown through the vehicle’s

windscreen.

The object damaged the vehicle’s

windscreen in Handsworth,

Birmingham (UK), and an

alternative ambulance was

dispatched

It “delayed the response” to the

patient by about 10 minutes,

the West Midlands Ambulance

Service said.

The incident on Worlds End Road

on Saturday was captured on

the vehicle’s CCTV, which will be

passed on to police.

UK ambulance emergency

operations director Nathan

Hudson’s dismay

“There is only one thing that an

ambulance travelling on blue

lights is doing and that is trying to

get to a patient in need.

“Given where the damage is, I

am just so glad that none of the

crew were hurt. It doesn’t bear

thinking about, what could have

happened.”

He added the service would work

with police to try and find and

prosecute the person responsible.

St John’s Ambulance

benefit from remote,

efficient immunity

testing for hepatitis B

with Medichecks

Around 250 people at St

John’s Ambulance have

taken advantage of a remote

blood testing service, after

the first aid charity teamed up

with Medichecks and Boots

Corporate Healthcare.

Since August 2020, the

partnership has delivered quicker

and more convenient immunity

testing for hepatitis B for St John’s

Ambulance employees and

volunteers.

This new centralised system for

provision of hepatitis B checks,

supported by Medichecks’

customer care team, has

significantly reduced admin time.

It’s also an essential service,

given the potential for exposure to

the virus from contact with bodily

fluids from another person.

Single use vouchers mean that

blood collection kits can be

ordered by individuals and posted

directly to their homes.

The test looks for hepatitis B

surface antibodies in the blood.

Samples are analysed by

Medichecks’ UKAS-accredited

partner laboratories, and individuals

receive their results via an online

dashboard, with commentary from

a Medichecks doctor.

A Clinical Project Officer with St

John Ambulance said: “The health

and safety of our employees and

volunteers is a top priority for St

John Ambulance. By working

with Medichecks, we can provide

hepatitis B immunity testing kits

posted directly to our volunteer’s

homes, which is a great bonus.

“By centralising the process

we’ve saved countless volunteer

hours and have peace of mind

knowing that the results are all

easily accessible in one place.

We find the order process very

simple, and the tests are available

to our employees and volunteers

in a very acceptable timeframe.

The customer care team at

Medichecks are always very quick

to respond to our emails and offer

a great standard of customer

service to us.”

Dr Sam Rodgers, Chief Medical

Officer at Medichecks adds:

“Medichecks’ service means that

St John’s Ambulance volunteers

and employees can focus on

what they do best - responding

to emergencies, supporting

communities and saving lives, with

the reassurance from knowing their

immunity status for hepatitis B.

“Because our tests are posted

out centrally, it means that

individuals don’t have to travel to

a specific location to collect their

test in their personal time. Use of

the Medichecks’ online system

with vouchers also removes

any requirement for St John’s

Ambulance to share personal

data of these frontline heroes.

“It’s a model we can roll out to a

range of businesses who need to

provide healthcare tests to their

teams. It’s also beneficial that

we can offer both venous blood

draws and at-home, remote fingerprick

collection methods, with

hepatitis B one of a whole range of

biomarkers we can monitor.”

About hepatitis B virus

Hepatitis B is an infection caused

by the hepatitis B virus (HBV),

which causes inflammation and

enlargement of the liver. HBV

infections can vary from a mild

form that lasts a few weeks, to a

more serious, chronic, form which

can cause lasting liver damage.

HBV is spread through contact

with blood or other body fluids

from an infected person.

For more information about

Medichecks’ testing for

employers, visit: https://services.

medichecks.com/

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153


NEWSLINE

SCAS

Ambulance service

urges people

to familiarise

themselves with

symptoms of sepsis

infection

A leading ambulance service

clinician has urged people to

familiarise themselves with the

signs and symptoms of lifethreatening

sepsis, sometimes

known as blood poisoning.

Mark Ainsworth-Smith MBE,

a consultant pre-hospital care

practitioner at South Central

Ambulance Service (SCAS), said

anyone can potentially develop

the condition, which occurs when

the immune system overreacts

to an infection – including viral

infections such as COVID-19.

However, those at higher risk of

developing sepsis are people

aged over 75 or young children

under a year old, as well as those

who have experienced physical

trauma such as fractures.

Patients who have compromised

immune systems, such as

patients who have undergone

recent chemotherapy, are

particularly at risk.

Symptoms can be vague

and initially often feel like flu,

gastroenteritis or a chest infection

but people can worsen very

quickly. This can cause their

blood pressure to fall and shock

the body which, if not treated

immediately, can result in organ

failure.

There are around 245,000 cases

of sepsis in the UK every year,

causing at least 48,000 deaths

and around 40% of all sepsis

survivors suffer permanent, lifechanging

after-effects.

However, if recognised and

diagnosed early it can be treated

effectively with medicines such

as antibiotics and intravenous

fluids, avoiding such severe

consequences.

“Most of us who develop an

infection will be fine; we will

recover and go completely back

to normal, but certain people will

suffer a dysregulated response in

the body which means they can

become very unwell very quickly,”

said Mr Ainsworth-Smith, who

spoke out as part of World Sepsis

Day today (Monday).

“This is of concern as, although

there are higher risk groups,

sepsis can affect anyone and it

can sometimes be hard to spot,

so it is really important people

familiarise themselves with the

signs and take action when they

need to.

“The pandemic has been a

complicating factor because

some patients have attributed

their symptoms to COVID-19 and

some have been scared to attend

hospitals and GP surgeries to

be assessed in fear that they are

going to catch COVID-19.

“This has led some patients to

delay seeking medical attention.

We want to take the opportunity to

highlight the condition and again

raise awareness of sepsis.”

Mr Ainsworth-Smith said it

was important for anyone

who develops a fever and

high temperature or shivering

to take it seriously and seek

medical advice. He also said the

development of new confusion

was a particularly worrying sign.

“Symptoms such as a high fever

or feeling really unwell or shivering

badly are absolutely things that

should be addressed and we

would recommend people contact

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NEWSLINE

their GP, phone 111 or use 111

online if they are experiencing

these symptoms and want to

get a professional opinion,” he

explained.

“However, if they truly think

they’ve got sepsis – particularly

if they are a person in a high risk

group – that is an emergency and

it’s perfectly appropriate to phone

999 in those circumstances where

our expert staff will ensure they

get the treatment they need as

quickly as possible.”

Mr Ainsworth-Smith said

ambulance services across

the UK have developed

extensive guidance and training

programmes for staff on

recognising sepsis, with SCAS the

first to adopt the second version

of the National Early Warning

Score 2 (NEWS2) system in the

UK to identify a person’s need for

hospital treatment.

“We have done a lot of education

with our staff to help them to

recognise patients with sepsis.

When sepsis is diagnosed, our

staff are well trained to start initial

treatment before transporting

seriously unwell patients rapidly to

hospital. Our crews will alert the

hospital so that sepsis specialists

are ready and waiting when they

arrive.

“When we assess a patient we’ll

have a look at their vital signs,

including their blood pressure,

heart rate, temperature and blood

sugar. NEWS2 is a scoring matrix

we use to identify the sickest

patients; the higher the score

the more unwell they are and the

more likely they are to require

intensive care.

“If patients have a score less than

that then we can decide what to

do and some of those patients,

particularly if they don’t have signs

of sepsis, may be suitable to stay

at home under close supervision

from their GP. Patients who do

actually have sepsis will end up

being transported to hospital.”

For more information,

visit the SCAS YouTube

channel (www.youtube.com/

watch?v=JK56CUU3TkE) to hear

more from Mr Ainsworth-Smith or

visit www.worldsepsisday.org.

SECAmb

Work starts on

new multi-purpose

ambulance, 999 and

NHS 111 centre in

Medway

Building work has started on

South East Coast Ambulance

Service NHS Foundation Trust’s

(SECAmb’s) new multi-purpose

ambulance, 999 and NHS 111

centre in Gillingham.

The development will include 999

and 111 call centre operations

as well as a Make Ready Centre

- the only one of its kind to bring

all three functions together

under one roof. Building work at

the Bredgar Road site follows

planning permission being

granted last year.

The contractor, Westridge

Construction, is now on site

carrying out groundworks ahead

of construction. The centre

is expected to become fully

operational in Autumn 2022.

SECAmb’s Make Ready vehicle

preparation and maintenance

system will occupy the two lower

floors while staff currently based

at the Trust’s East 999 Emergency

Operations Centre (EOC) in

Coxheath and Trust NHS 111 staff,

currently based in Ashford, Kent,

will benefit from modern openplan

offices above.

Integrating both 999 and

111 services is a key part of

SECAmb’s strategy to deliver

more joined up integrated care

and to increase efficiency. The

development will also bring the

east of SECAmb’s region in

line with its West Emergency

Operations Centre (including NHS

111), based in Crawley, which

opened in 2017.

SECAmb’s Make Ready system,

which is already in place across

much of its region, is a vehicle

preparation system which sees

specialist teams of staff employed

to clean, restock and maintain the

Trust’s fleet.

Ambulance crews currently

starting and ending their shifts at

Medway Ambulance Station in

Chatham will, instead, start and

finish at the new centre. They will

then respond from ambulance

community response posts

across the region with suitable

rest facilities for crews between

calls and when on a break.

Staff based in Sheppey will

continue to start and end their

shifts from the ambulance

station on the island, which has

undergone a major refurbishment

and upgrade to provide new

educational and training facilities.

SECAmb currently operates nine

Make Ready Centres across its

region with Brighton the latest

centre to open in December 2020.

SECAmb Executive Director of

Operations Emma Williams said:

“It’s really great that building

work is now under way on this

important development for

SECAmb. Our current building

at Coxheath is outdated and not

adequate for our requirements.

Having operations centres for

999 and 111 under one roof

will ensure we further optimise

functions between the services.

“The new centre provides us

with greater capacity, means

we can improve the ratio of 999

call taking across our two EOCs

and will bring local recruitment

opportunities for people across

both 999 and 111 services.

“Not only is our Make Ready

system more efficient but the new

building will also provide staff

with access to modern facilities

for training. We understand any

change has an impact on staff

and we will continue to fully

engage with everyone affected

ahead of the move next year.”

What is Make Ready?

• SECAmb’s Make Ready

initiative significantly enhances

and improves the service it

provides to the community

• It minimises the risk of crossinfection,

frees up front-line

staff – who traditionally cleaned

and re-stocked ambulances

– to spend more time treating

patients, and keeps vehicles on

the road for longer

• The initiative ensures that

specially-trained operatives

regularly deep-clean, restock

and check vehicles for

mechanical faults

• Make Ready Centres are

supported by a network

of Ambulance Community

Responses Posts (ACRPs)

across the area with staff

beginning and ending their

shifts at the new centre

• During their shifts, staff will

respond from the ACRPs which

will provide facilities for staff.

These are located based on

patient demand

• Crews continue to respond

from the same towns under the

system but begin and end their

shifts at staggered times with a

vehicle that is fully prepared for

them

• The system ensures crews have

access to improved training

facilities and opportunities

and increased support from

managers.

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155


NEWSLINE

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

Research shows

the valuable role of

Helicopter Emergency

Medical Services

(HEMS) in responding

to incidents of

penetrating torso

trauma in semi-rural

areas

Research by Air Ambulance

Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS)

and the University of Surrey

also highlights a prevalence of

incidents along known County

Lines.

Research from life-saving charity

Air Ambulance Kent Surrey

Sussex (KSS) in partnership

with the University of Surrey has

shown the significant benefits

of HEMS in responding to

penetrating torso injuries suffered

by patients in rural or semi-rural

areas. Penetrating trauma is

most commonly associated with

stabbing or shooting.

The retrospective study, which

analysed data over a sixyear

period, also highlights a

prevalence of these incidents

along known County Lines,

networks established by citybased

drug dealers to supply and

sell drugs to users in towns and

rural areas.

The findings demonstrate the

value of HEMS in expediting

critical treatment for this group

of penetrating trauma patients in

rural and semi-rural areas and will

inform multi-agency knife crime

prevention strategy in these areas.

The study identified that between

1st January 2014 and 31st

December 2019:

• KSS attended 363 patients who

had sustained a penetrating

torso injury;

• 88% of these patients were

male with a median age of 30

years;

• 62% of these incidents

occurred during the night;

• 121 HEMS-specific

interventions were performed

in 14% of patients, with chest

surgical decompression the

most common (n=31);

• The median time from incident

occurring to arriving in hospital

was 1.5 hours, with HEMS

arriving in a median of 39

minutes to start critical care,

before the patient arrived in

hospital;

• Heat map incidence data

closely correlated with County

Lines.

Penetrating trauma patients

pose a significant challenge to

pre-hospital emergency medical

care providers. Time-critical

non-compressible hemorrhage

requires rapid assessment and

typically transport to a Major

Trauma Centre (MTC). In this

study, 54 patients required one or

more HEMS-specific time-critical

interventions in the pre-hospital

setting, and in total 78% of

patients were transferred to a

MTC.

Penetrating trauma has been a

substantial part of the trauma

workload in urban areas in the

UK for the last decade [1] and

more recently it has increased in

rural and semi-rural areas, where

patients are frequently significantly

further away from a tertiary care

centre. In this study, the town

of Margate in Kent, located 73

miles and two hours away from

its nearest MTC, had a significant

number of penetrating torso

trauma patients. The involvement

of KSS resulted in transfer time for

these patients being halved.

Professor Richard Lyon MBE,

Associate Medical Director at KSS

and Professor of Pre-Hospital

Emergency Care at the University

of Surrey, said:

“We know that time is absolutely

critical to patients who have

suffered penetrating torso trauma

from a knife or gunshot injury. It

can be challenging to discern

which injuries require immediate

intervention. Penetrating trauma

patients can initially present as

stable but can quickly deteriorate

into a life-threatening condition.

Getting the advanced clinical

skills and clinical decision-making

of HEMS teams to patients

as quickly as possible can

significantly improve outcomes for

these patients.”

“From their significant clinical

experience, HEMS teams are

more aware of underlying injuries

and, in addition to providing

emergency treatment at the

scene, also have the capability

to intervene en route to hospital if

required. 34 patients in our study

required a blood transfusion

whilst being transferred by KSS to

hospital.”

He continued:

“Previous studies have

demonstrated that the accuracy

of clinical examination to establish

the degree of bleeding and

potential for internal damage

after penetrating injury is poor,

making it difficult to predict which

patients will deteriorate before

they reach hospital. Our study

confirms this, and also shows

that HEMS attendance can be

crucial. Several of the patients in

this study received pre-hospital

interventions, without which they

would not have survived.”

The research also highlighted

the geographical distribution of

penetrating trauma across KSS’s

region over the six-year study

period and identifies a specific

pattern which mirrors existing

drug trafficking County Lines.

This information will help knife

crime prevention strategy and will

also support the safeguarding of

vulnerable people at risk.

The research has been published

in the Scandinavian Journal

of Trauma, Resuscitation and

Emergency Medicine.

NWAS

New major multisports

event, The

Gratitude Games,

launches to support

the mental health of

emergency service

and NHS workers

• The Gratitude Games aims

to generate £10 million

in funding to support

Emergency Responders’

mental health over the next

five years

• The Cities of Manchester

and Salford will hold the

inaugural games next year

for over 20,000 Emergency

Responders and their families

The Gratitude Games, a new

sporting event to support the

mental health of emergency

service and NHS workers is

calling on the British public and

businesses to donate to their

fundraising appeal.

1 in 4 (27%) emergency service

workers have considered ending

their lives due to stress and other

factors 1 , and this has only been

amplified by the pandemic, with

69% 2 reporting that their mental

health has worsened since the

start of Covid-19. 3

The first Gratitude Games

will be hosted by the Cities of

Manchester and Salford from 27th

April – 29th May 2022 at leading

venues, including the iconic

Etihad campus. The Games will

unite over 20,000 Emergency

Responders and their families,

across 20 different sports. From

the whole of the NHS and the Fire

and Rescue Service, to RNLI and

Cave Rescue, workers from 17

different Emergency Services will

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NEWSLINE

be able to take part. The event will

be open to all sporting abilities,

and the triathlon and road running

events (including a 5k and 10k),

will also be open to the public.

The funds raised will be deployed

through four existing specialist

organisations – Police Care UK,

The Fire Fighters Charity, The

Ambulance Staff Charity and Duty

to Care (NHS) - who collectively

support all emergency responders

to improve their mental health.

Duty to Care, for example,

provides NHS workers with free

one to one online consultations.

This is followed by wellbeing

support including coaching, yoga

and other holistic interventions.

The Gratitude Games is

the brainchild of serving

Buckinghamshire fire fighter Mike

Downard and sports industry

veteran Simon Rider, who founded

the charity UK Emergency Services

Giving (UKESG) to help ensure

every Emergency Responder

has access to the tailored mental

health support they need.

The expectations and demands

placed on our emergency

services and NHS workers are

higher than ever. Whether caring

for a patient in an ICU, telling

someone that their loved one

has died or dealing with the

aftermath of a car crash, our

Emergency Responders witness

more trauma on a daily basis than

most of us do in a lifetime. It has

been estimated that whilst most

ordinary people will encounter

serious trauma no more than

three or four times in their life – for

police officers it is 400-600 times.

Commenting on the issues that

drove him to develop the Gratitude

Games as the key fundraising

platform for UKESG, Mike said “In

my 18 years as a fire fighter, I have

seen first-hand the devastating

impact that working on the front line

can have on your mental health.

You can be dealing with multiple

traumatic events on a daily basis

and that can really take its toll.

“The pandemic has affected

the mental health of many, but

especially those of us in the

emergency services - so there

is an urgent need to make sure

the specialist support is readily

available. To help make this a

reality, we are calling upon the

British public and businesses to get

behind the Gratitude Games - by

donating to the fundraising appeal

and sharing the message of the

Games to friends and family.”

One of the first supporters of

the Gratitude Games is Ricky

Nuttall, a fire fighter who recently

appeared on Channel 4’s

SAS: Who Dares Wins. Ricky

experienced a steep decline in his

mental health after the Grenfell

fire.

He recalls: “I began to feel

depressed and anxious and my

relationships started to crumble.

One evening, I sat on my living

room floor and cried for four hours

straight. I then realised that I

couldn’t handle feeling this sad for

the rest of my life. I didn’t see how

I could recover. That was the first

time I wanted to kill myself and it

scared me”.

Chloe Kitto, Occupational

Therapist and Wellbeing Lead

at Royal National Orthopaedic

Hospital, who used the Duty to

Care services during her time on

the front line commented:

“I spent the first few months of the

pandemic developing wellbeing

training to critical care staff across

London, helping psychologically

prepare thousands of NHS staff

for the uncertainties, risk and

trauma of Covid-19 frontline

work. Healthcare workers and

emergency responders are used

to being the care providers, not

the care receivers. However,

after a few months it was clear

I was not practising what I was

preaching. I was ignoring signs of

stress and trauma within myself,

I closed off from people close

to me, became obsessive about

the news, eventually leaning on

alcohol to cope.

“I didn’t feel ready to seek

psychological support at that

stage, and instead came across

the Duty to Care charity. Almost

immediately I was offered access

to coaching sessions, yoga

practice, breathing sessions,

nutritional support, and a variety

of other holistic wellbeing

interventions.”

The Gratitude Games will raise

public awareness of the mental

health challenges faced by

so many of our Emergency

Responders, whilst enabling

people to show their appreciation

for the essential work they do.

To donate to the fundraising

appeal, please visit:

www.crowdfunder.co.uk/

gratitudegames

To find out more and register your

interest visit:

www.gratitudegames.uk

1

Mind data: April 2016

2

Of Emergency Responders

3

Mind: Blue Light “Behind The

Mask” Report, published May

2021

LAS

An open letter

to London and

Londoners

As the country marks 999 Day,

I would like to pay tribute to the

dedicated staff and volunteers

at London Ambulance Service

and to all our emergency

services partners who support

us in our work. We also

remember the ten colleagues

who have died from the virus

during this pandemic, as well as

their families and friends.

I am extremely grateful to

everyone – from our call handlers

and ambulance crews to our fleet

teams and corporate staff – who

continue to work so hard caring

for this city of more than nine

million people. They’ve worked

tirelessly and continue to give their

all to Londoners after 20 months

of responding to COVID-19 and

associated pressures.

Our staff and volunteers,

alongside other health and

social care workers, have had to

cope with so many changes to

how we work, wearing hot and

restrictive PPE, enduring lengthy

separations from family, and

losing loved ones and cherished

colleagues to the virus.

Throughout, it has taken almost

superhuman effort to maintain

the strength and professionalism

to be there for London when it

needed us most.

For London Ambulance Service,

our winter has arrived early. July

was our second busiest month

ever. We’ve also just had our

busiest August. At peak times we

are receiving calls every seven

seconds to our 999 and 111

control rooms.

We are planning for one of our

longest winters. It’s going to

be gruelling for everyone in our

Service but I know we will not

stop going the extra miles. I’m

determined to do all I can to

support our people to deliver

the best possible care for our

patients.

To all London Ambulance Service

staff and volunteers on this 999

Day: thank you for all you do. I

am inspired by your passion and

dedication and look forward to

supporting you in the important

work we still have ahead of us.

Daniel Elkeles

Chief Executive, London

Ambulance Service

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

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NEWSLINE

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

SECAmb

Little Lila and

lifesavers special

guests as Duke of

Cambridge marks

Emergency Services

Day

A 5-year-old girl from Rainham,

Kent, and the off-duty SECAmb

and Kent Fire and Rescue

Service members of staff who

saved her life were special

guests as HRH The Duke of

Cambridge marked Emergency

Services Day on 9 September.

Lila Page attended the royal

engagement at Dockhead Fire

Station, South London, with

mum Tracey Bell, ambulance

technician, Charlotte Speers along

with on call fire-fighters Marc

Rustage and James Knight.

Lila was successfully resuscitated

by the trio after she collapsed in

March 2020. Charlotte was at The

Railway pub in the town when she

heard a commotion and the pub

manager shouting for someone to

call an ambulance.

Upon investigating, Charlotte

found little Lila on the floor,

unconscious and not breathing

and immediately started CPR.

By luck, also in the pub off duty

were Marc and James, who are

part of the joint ambulance/fire

co-responder scheme. Marc

supported Charlotte in treating

Lila while James fetched a

defibrillator from the nearby fire

station (although this wasn’t

needed).

Ahead of the ambulance crew

arriving they managed to get

Lila breathing again. Following

further treatment and tests, it was

subsequently discovered that

Lila has a heart condition. She

has since had surgery at Great

Ormond Street Hospital and is

doing very well.

Charlotte, who was on maternity

leave at the time but who has

since returned to duty for

SECAmb at Medway Make Ready

Centre said: “It was a real honour

to meet the Duke and to represent

all my colleagues. I had never

done a paediatric resus before

and having no equipment as well,

I was feeling rather overwhelmed.

Having the support of Marc and

James made the situation easier.

They should be very proud of

everything they did. I’m really

pleased that Lila is doing so well

and it was lovely to meet her

and her mum. It’s a day we’ll all

remember forever.”

Tracey said: “We were honoured

to be invited to meet the Duke

and celebrate the well-deserved

recognition of our heroes.

Words could never express how

grateful we are that they saved

our daughters life. Seeing my

daughter’s lifeless body lying

there was the worst experience of

my life.

“I will never forget the help that

Charlie, Marc and James gave

while off duty, nor will I ever

forget Charlie grabbing my hand,

placing it on Lila’s chest and say,

‘she’s breathing’. One silver lining

from this horrendous event has

not only brought back my little girl

but it’s also given me a life-long

friend in Charlie.”

Charlotte, Marc and James will

receive a special award for their

actions at SECAmb’s annual staff

awards ceremony which takes

place in October.

Frontline Coffee

Launches ‘Lift Off’

Blend in Support of

Air Ambulances UK

An online coffee charity

founded by firefighters for

frontline workers launches ‘Lift

Off’ coffee in support of the

UK’s air ambulance charities

Frontline Coffee was set up by

firefighters Matt Broxton and Tom

Taylor in 2018 and took off during

last year’s national lockdowns.

Their mission is to raise money for

frontline charities and so far have

raised over £20,000 for charities

that support the people of our

emergency and health services.

As part of Air Ambulance Week,

they have announced their

support for Air Ambulances UK

with their latest product the ‘Lift

off’ blend. This is a medium

roast coffee with a classic Italian

espresso taste offering an after

taste of chocolate.

Air Ambulances UK champions,

represents, and supports the

lifesaving work of the UK’s air

ambulance charities, enabling

them to save even more lives

every day.

When the public purchase

Frontline Coffee’s ‘Lift Off’ blend,

a minimum of £1.50 per 250g bag

is donated.

Air ambulance charities are

collectively dispatched to

over 80 lifesaving missions

each day across the UK; each

mission is funded almost

entirely by donations. Though

air ambulances are part of the

regional 999 response service and

work closely with NHS hospitals,

each of the 21 air ambulances

in the UK are charities. By

purchasing Frontline Coffee’s

Lift Off blend, customers will be

helping air ambulance charities

save even more lives.

Emma Carter, Head of

Fundraising and Sustainability for

Air Ambulances UK said

“We are very excited for Frontline

Coffee to launch Lift Off coffee in

support of Air Ambulances UK. It

is well known that air ambulances

crews across the country are

fuelled by coffee, so it is great

to be able to work with Frontline

Coffee to develop a coffee in

support of the UK’s air ambulance

charities.”

Matt Broxton, Founder of Frontline

Coffee says “We are delighted to

announce our partnership with

Air Ambulances UK by adding

‘Lift Off’ to our charity coffee

range. Supporting air ambulance

charities across the UK is so

important as they rely almost

entirely on donations. Money

raised from the sale of this coffee

is going to really help with the lifesaving

work carried out by these

amazing teams every day.”

To purchase ‘Lift Off’ coffee and

support Air Ambulances UK, visit

the Frontline Coffee website:

https://frontlinecoffee.co.uk/.

Increased antibody

testing will avert

Plan B, says expert

Increased antibody testing

will give a far clearer picture

of how well our resistance to

Covid-19 is maintained this

winter. That’s vital to help the

Government avoid imposing

passports, working from home

and compulsory masks, says

London Medical Laboratory.

Concern is growing that

the number of Covid-19

hospitalisations could suddenly

soar this winter. That would

trigger the Government’s ‘Plan

B’ response, this ‘last resort’

would include measures such

as requiring people to work

from home, introducing vaccine

passports and reintroducing

compulsory face masks.

The leading Covid-19 testing

expert, Dr Quinton Fivelman,

Chief Scientific Officer at London

Medical Laboratory, says more

widespread antibody testing will

flag diminishing resistance and

identify many of the individuals

most at risk of hospitalisation,

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NEWSLINE

well before the NHS finds itself

under unsustainable pressure.

It will also determine whether

the planned six-month gap for

booster jabs is the best option for

everyone, or needs to be brought

forward for some people.

Says Dr Fivelman: ‘The

Government’s new Plan A, which

includes booster jabs for the over

50s and frontline health workers,

and vaccinating 12–15-yearolds,

will undoubtedly reduce

hospitalisations this winter.

However, to be sure to avoid the

imposition of the Government’s

Plan B measures, the NHS Test

and Trace PCR programme needs

to be supplemented with regular

testing of Covid antibody levels.

‘So far, the only Government

action on this has been the limited

antibody testing programme

introduced by the UK Health

Security Agency (UKHSA). This

only gives free antibody tests

to a proportion of those testing

positive for Covid following a PCR

test. Anyone else who wants to

measure their antibody levels

must still go private.

‘The best way to avoid a sudden

upsurge in hospitalisations is to

have a far clearer idea of how

well antibody levels are holding

up across the population. That

means we need to increase the

number of IgG (immunoglobulin

G) antibody tests being carried

out, and a shared database

needs to be created so

information from Government

and private labs can be bought

together.

‘Why is this vital? Antibodies

don’t guarantee immunity, but a

2020 British study in healthcare

workers concluded that the

presence of anti-virus IgG

antibodies was associated with

a substantially reduced risk of

SARS-CoV-2 reinfection in the

ensuing six months.

‘Our research reveals that 1 in

100 fully vaccinated people fail

to develop any antibodies at all

after vaccination. That means

that, even if every UK adult

is vaccinated, half a million

adults will have no protection

whatsoever, and not even

realise.

‘Of equal concern is the fact that

our most recent tests are finding

a growing number of people

who have been jabbed now have

lower values (50 to 500AU/ml)

of antibodies and the clinical

significance of this is still being

researched. The “cut-off value”

is still not known and how long

protection will last is still being

fully understood. If someone

takes a test and their score is

low, their antibody levels may

have significantly declined over

time, and they may be more

susceptible to the virus as time

passes.

‘To avoid Plan B, we need to

have a far clearer idea of the

speed at which antibody levels

are waning. We are beginning

to develop a better picture

of how long they survive and

what kind of protection they

offer over time. Researchers in

Australia have found correlations

between the efficacy of flu jabs

and coronavirus vaccinations. It

appears probable that immunity

to severe infection may be much

more durable over time than

overall immunity to reinfection,

but that any reinfection is usually

mild. The protective efficacy was

found to decline by about 7%

per month after the influenza

vaccination. This might give

some indication of how Covid-19

vaccines will perform over time.

‘It’s not only severe infections

that we need to prevent. Long

Covid symptoms may also

put the NHS under increasing

pressure. New Government

data released yesterday shows

the ongoing impact of Long

Covid. 9.4% of people reported

symptoms ranging from

fevers and aches to diarrhoea,

shortness of breath and loss of

smell up to eight weeks after

infection, with 5% still suffering

some of these after 16 weeks.

‘If anyone is concerned about

their own immune response

to the jabs and how well they

continue to produce antibodies,

the new generation blood tests

we offer are highly accurate,

quick and simple to carry out,

either in their own home or at a

clinic. These tests are available

privately for those who don’t

qualify for the Government’s new

limited testing programme.

‘For the latest information

about the level of protection

vaccinations offer against

Covid-19, see London

Medical Laboratory’s new

White Paper at: https://www.

privatecoronavirustests.com/

page/vaccine-immunity

SECAmb

Free Premier League

and WSL tickets for

emergency services

Brighton & Hove Albion are

giving away more than 1000 free

Premier League and 500 free

Women’s Super League match

tickets to NHS and emergency

services workers this season.

As promised in the early part of the

pandemic, the club committed to

1000 free tickets to NHS workers,

once the season resumed

and fans were able to return to

stadiums across the county.

However, the football club has now

increased the number of available

tickets for NHS workers to attend

even more men’s and women’s

first team league matches.

An additional 500 tickets have

also been donated by the club to

enable other emergency service

workers the chance to apply to

get their hands on the free tickets.

Albion men’s first-team head

coach Graham Potter said: “We

are hugely grateful to the amazing

work our emergency services

undertake and never more so than

the previous 18 months. As a club

we have shown our gratitude and

support wherever we can, and we

are delighted to be able to offer

these tickets.”

Women’s first-team manager

Hope Powell added: “We

are really looking forward to

welcoming fans back into

stadiums for the new season,

and I am delighted we, as a club,

can show a small token of our

appreciation to those emergency

services heroes.”

Will Campbell-Lamerton,

Partnerships and Operations

Manager at Blue Light Tickets,

said:

“The return of the Premier League

will feel even more exciting this

year, now that fans can once

again show their support from

the stadiums. The UK’s NHS and

emergency workers have been the

true heroes of the pandemic in the

last 18 months. It’s thanks to their

tremendous efforts to support the

vaccine roll out that restrictions

are now able to be lifted, and the

whole nation owes them a great

deal of thanks. It’s fantastic to be

partnering with Brighton & Hove

Albion to show our thanks by

giving fans the chance to watch

their football team for free.”

Emergency service and NHS

workers can now sign up to

Blue Light Tickets and apply

for the tickets here: https://

bluelighttickets.co.uk/event/244

All tickets are for Premier League

and WSL fixtures over the course

of the 2021/22 season and tickets

will be distributed through the

Blue Light Tickets website.

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

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159


NEWSLINE

LAS

London Ambulance

Service workers

nominated for

national award

A paramedic who helped a

teenager in cardiac arrest, a 999

dispatcher who educates young

people about the dangers

of knife crime, and a group

of medics who saved their

colleague’s life have all been

nominated for a national award.

London Ambulance Service staff

were put forward for a Who Cares

Wins award, which recognises

people working in the health

service.

Among them is Raj Mann, who

drives one of our fast response

cars and has been shortlisted

for his part in saving the life of

18-year-old Omar when he went

into cardiac arrest at home.

Paramedic Raj, who is based

at Kenton and has worked at

London Ambulance Service for 11

years, recalls being called out to

the incident in May last year and

arriving first on the scene.

He kept Omar’s parents, Diane

and Jeff, involved and updated

while working with his colleagues

to restart the teenager’s heart.

Raj said: I remember that night

really clearly. Everyone came

together, and I’m so pleased

we were able to give Omar that

chance.

Now he has his whole life ahead

of him. It just shows how important

CPR is and how it can make

a difference to the survival of

someone who is in cardiac arrest.

Having already heard from the

hospital that Omar had survived,

Raj decided to visit the teenager’s

family a few weeks later to see

how they were. He couldn’t and

still can’t explain why, but he had

felt a connection with them and

was particularly moved by the

experience.

His visit marked the start of a

special friendship, with Raj since

being invited to family gatherings

and birthday celebrations.

Diane said: Raj became a friend

because he invested his time and

energy with the whole family. He

would check to see how Omar and

our family were. He saw us for who

we are – not just a family with a

son that had a cardiac arrest.

Raj added: They really are the

nicest family, and I’m so glad we

were there in their moment of

need. I’m very touched that Diane

nominated me for this award.

I don’t see what I do as a job – I

love what I do, and this is one of

the reasons why.

It’s an honour to be shortlisted,

but this is for the whole team.

From the call handler who took

the 999 call, to the other people

who attended that night, and all

the health professionals at the

hospital and in the aftermath – this

is on behalf of all of them.”

Ambulance dispatcher Mandy

Cassidy and medics from our

Hazardous Area Response Team

(HART) and Tactical Response

Unit (TRU) also received

nominations for an award but just

missed out on being shortlisted.

Mandy joined London Ambulance

Service 18 years ago after

suffering the traumatic loss of her

son – a victim of knife crime.

She now delivers knife crime

presentations to Year 7 children

at school and dedicates her

time teaching them about the

consequences of carrying a knife.

She also teaches basic first aid

and what to do if you come across

someone who has been stabbed.

Stuart said: It was as if the lights

just went out. Luckily there were a

lot of experienced paramedics in

the room with me.

Had I not been at work, had this

happened elsewhere, I don’t think

I would be here now.

Daniel Elkeles, Chief Executive

of London Ambulance Service,

said: Raj, Mandy, and Stuart’s

colleagues richly deserve this

recognition, and I would like

to congratulate them all. They

are wonderful ambassadors for

London Ambulance Service and

we are very lucky to have them.

To have three nominations for

a Who Cares Wins award is

fantastic and testament to the

incredible staff and volunteers

we have working here at London

Ambulance Service. Best of luck

to Raj on the night, we will all be

rooting for you.

Over 23k NHS

employees to receive

access to platform to

report problematic

behaviour

The NHS Leicester,

Leicestershire and Rutland

(LLR) Academy has partnered

with tech-for-good developer,

Speaking about why she joined

Culture Shift, to offer more

London Ambulance Service, she

than 23,500 NHS employees

said: I wanted to do something for

access to its reporting platform,

me. My world was turned upside

designed to give staff improved

down and it appealed to me to do

opportunities for reporting

something to help people.

experiences of discrimination,

bullying, harassment and

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

Meanwhile, HART medic Stuart

Law nominated his colleagues for

saving his life when he stopped

breathing at work.

When they were unable to find a

pulse they immediately started chest

compressions – and one colleague

also drove to his home to tell his

partner, Heather, who also works for

London Ambulance Service.

victimisation in the workplace.

Launching in September 2021, the

online platform will provide NHS

staff with a safe space to disclose

incidents - anonymously or

non-anonymously – and is set to

enhance LLR’s existing approach

to creating a safe workplace free

from bullying, harassment and

discrimination.

160

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NEWSLINE

The reporting platform will be

available to approximately

17,800 staff at NHS University

Hospitals of Leicester, 5,500 at

Leicestershire Partnership Trust

and 278 across LLR Clinical

Commissioning Groups. As

part of the implementation of

the new system, NHS Leicester,

Leicestershire and Rutland will be

working hard to raise awareness

of all reporting routes available to

its employees.

Jen Mulloy, Equality and Inclusion

Business Partner at NHS

Midlands and Lancashire CSU,

commented: “The Leicester,

Leicestershire and Rutland (LLR)

Academy is pleased to be working

with Culture Shift to launch the

LLR YourVoice report and support

tool. The YourVoice report and

support tool will enhance our

existing approach to creating a

safe workplace free from bullying,

harassment and discrimination.”

NHS leaders will be given access

to the platform’s data analytics

dashboard to gain actionable

insights and identify patterns

of behaviour in their workplace.

The reporting platform will also

give key stakeholders access

to workshops to ensure they

have the knowledge needed to

implement it successfully and

develop a bespoke strategy,

policy review and communications

plan off the back of it.

“This online platform will give

our workforce a confidential,

anonymous and convenient

way to report their experiences

in order for us to prevent and

tackle discrimination, bullying,

harassment and victimisation. The

analytics part of the system will be

fundamental in helping us identify

trends and target interventions

as well as providing robust

information to support our current

reporting systems. The platform

also enables a fully integrated

case management process,”

continued Jen Mulloy.

Gemma McCall, CEO of Culture

Shift, added: “We’re proud to

be offering NHS staff access to

anonymous reporting and helping

to drive positive change. The

NHS has been under immense

pressure this past year and

access to the platform will give

much needed additional support

to NHS staff. The launch of our

platform will help break down

barriers to reporting and ensure

LLR is taking a proactive and

preventative approach to any

problematic behaviour. Our

aim with the system is to create

an environment where staff

feel empowered to speak up

about any instances of bullying,

harassment or discrimination.”

Culture Shift exists to lead

positive change in organisational

culture, through building products

that empower them to tackle

harassment and bullying. Its

reporting platform is already

providing support to almost one

million people in workplaces and

higher education institutions and

is currently used in over 70 of the

UK’s universities.

To find out more about how

Culture Shift is collaborating with

organisations to monitor and

prevent problematic behaviour or

to request a demo of the software,

visit culture-shift.co.uk.

WAS

WAS is seeking to

re-enlist military

support

The Welsh Ambulance Service

is seeking to re-enlist military

support to assist with its

Covid-19 effort.

The Trust has submitted a request

for additional support to Welsh

Government under the Military

Aid to the Civil Authorities (MACA)

arrangement.

If approved, it will be the third time

that soldiers have supported the

service through the pandemic.

Chief Executive Jason Killens

said: “Covid-19 has presented

a challenge like no other, but

the last couple of months in

particular have meant significant

and sustained pressures on our

ambulance service.

“The Trust is starting to return

to some of the arrangements

we had in place at the height of

the pandemic to better manage

the increase in Covid-19 related

activity that we’re feeling the

impact of once again.

“As part of this, we’re seeking to

re-enlist the military, who did a

superb job of assisting us on two

occasions previously last year.

“Winter is our busiest time, and

this will enable us to get a head

start on what we foresee will be

a tough period, especially when

you couple Covid-19 demand with

seasonal flu and our usual winter

pressures.

“This is about bolstering our

capacity as far we can and putting

us in the best possible position

to provide a safe service to the

people of Wales.”

More than 200 British Army

soldiers have already assisted

the Trust’s Covid-19 effort by

driving and decontaminating

ambulance vehicles as part of

Operation Rescript.

Among them were 90 soldiers

from 9 Regiment Royal Logistic

Corps, who were enlisted on

Christmas Eve at the height

of the second wave of the

pandemic.

More broadly, more than 20,000

military personnel have been

supporting public services

across the UK during the

pandemic as part of a ‘COVID

Support Force’.

A spokesperson for Joint Military

Command Wales said: “Defence

remains ready to offer support

to civil authorities in the UK

and we will work with the Welsh

Government and the Welsh

Ambulance Services NHS Trust

to understand their requirements

and offer assistance where

appropriate.

“Since March 2020, Defence

has supported more than 450

Military Aid to Civilian Authority

(MACA) requests as part of the

Covid Response Force.”

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

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161


IN PERSON

SECAMB News

Trust welcomes new Non-

Executive Director

South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS

Foundation Trust (SECAmb) is pleased

to announce the appointment of a new

Independent Non-Executive Director.

A registered nurse by background, Liz Sharp

was appointed by SECAmb’s Council of

Governors and began a three-year term

of office on 19 September. With more than

30-years’ background in both the public and

private health sectors, she brings with her a

huge wealth of knowledge in delivering and

improving patient outcomes and experience.

Until 2018, Liz was the National Director of Clinical

Services for BMI Healthcare, an independent

provider running 54 hospitals. Her executive

career includes her working in partnership with the

clinical education team to develop an in-house

associate practitioner programme, enhancing

governance through introducing an electronic

risk-based reporting system for staff, and leading

large-scale change programmes including

building a care and rehabilitation centre and

developing clinical strategy.

An experienced non-executive, she remains a

Trustee of the Queen Elizabeth’s Foundation

for Disabled People and is both Chair of its

Care, Quality and Safety Committee and the

Board’s Safeguarding Lead.

Chair of SECAmb, David Astley, said: “I would

like to formally welcome Liz to SECAmb

and know that her appointment will bring

additional support and challenge to the Board,

in particular regarding patient experience.

Her three decades in the health sector will

be of real value to the us and I look forward

to working closely with her over the coming

months and years.”

Liz said: “It will be a great privilege to work

with my fellow NEDs, the senior management

team and everyone at SECAmb to shape and

influence services that make such a difference

to people’s lives. I strongly believe that I can

help shape, support and drive the patient

experience agenda and strengthen clinical,

governance and commercial developments that

will

further enhance and build the reputation of

the Trust on a local and national level.”

SECAmb’s Board meetings are held in

public, and are observable in real time online

currently, using Microsoft Teams. For meeting

papers and a link to the Board meetings, visit

our website: Trust Board meeting dates and

papers | NHS South East Coast Ambulance

Service (secamb.nhs.uk)

KSS News

Air Ambulance Kent Surrey

Sussex announces changes

to board of trustees

The Board of Trustees of Air Ambulance

Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS) has elected

Barney Burgess as Chair in succession to Dr

Helen Bowcock OBE, DL. Professor Andrew

Rhodes and Michael Docherty succeed

Barney Burgess as joint Vice Chairs. The

appointments take effect from December 2021.

Barney Burgess, who joined the Board of KSS

in 2017, has a broad business experience,

having worked for McKinsey & Co as a

consultant before joining Tesco plc where he

ran their grocery home shopping business

and was a Commercial Director. Barney is now

a partner in a private equity firm, Hattington

Investment Partners.

George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation

Trust and a past President of the European

Society of Intensive Care Medicine. Andrew is

also a member of the Executive Committee of

the Surviving Sepsis Campaign.

Michael Docherty became a Trustee at KSS in

2017. Michael was formerly Director of Digital

and Supporter Experience at Cancer Research

UK, leading the digital transformation of the

UK’s largest charity and building its fundraising

and event platform. Michael has extensive

experience in the digital, media, telecoms and

charity sectors.

Dr Helen Bowcock OBE, DL joined KSS in

2014, and has led the charity through a period

of significant growth, enabling KSS to increase

its impact and to diversify its sources of income.

In 2016, KSS became the first UK Helicopter

Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) to

introduce the AW169 helicopter as an air

ambulance, allowing 360 degree in-aircraft

access to patients for the first time.

During that year a research partnership was

established with the University of Surrey.

Subsequently a dedicated research fund

has led to KSS becoming internationally

recognised for its pioneering work in furthering

the understanding and development of prehospital

emergency care.

Today, KSS has one of the highest pre-hospital

research outputs in the UK and is supporting

two PhDs.

In March 2020, the charity became the first

HEMS to be rated outstanding by the Care

Quality Commission (CQC) across all five

of its inspection key lines of enquiry: safe,

effective, caring, responsive and well-led. Also

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

Significantly, in 2015, Barney’s life was saved

by KSS when he collapsed with a cardiac

arrest whilst running a half-marathon. KSS

delivered pre-hospital emergency treatment

at the scene before flying Barney to King’s

College Hospital. Barney brings enormous

passion and commitment to the charity which

saved his life.

Professor Andrew Rhodes was appointed

to the KSS Board in 2019. He is Professor of

Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine at St

Barney Burgess

162

For further recruitment vacancies visit: www.ambulanceukonline.com


IN PERSON

Dr Helen Bowcock OBE

in 2020, KSS was honoured to welcome Her

Royal Highness, The Princess Royal to visit the

charity’s Redhill base.

Under Helen’s leadership and despite the

unprecedented challenges of COVID-19, KSS

has remained fully operational 24/7 throughout

the pandemic. As a result of the charity’s strong

governance and wholehearted support from the

communities it serves, KSS was able to quickly

launch a successful emergency appeal.

The charity also worked with a number

of key strategic partners including the

National Director of Major Trauma to develop

procedures for the safe transfer of the most

seriously ill COVID-19 patients by helicopter. In

partnership with South East Coast Ambulance

Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb), to

date KSS has been able to transfer over 100

patients between Intensive Care Units across

its region.

In recognition of these achievements, in

September 2020 KSS won the Charity Times

Charity of the Year Award (income over £10M)

and in September 2021 the charity won the

Kent Charity of the Year Award.

Barney Burgess said: “I owe my life to KSS,

and it is a real privilege to have been elected

as the new Chair of the charity. I would like

to thank Helen for the hugely beneficial and

lasting contributions to KSS that she has

made. Our reach, breadth of support and

governance have never been stronger thanks

to Helen’s excellent leadership. I’m very

excited to be taking up the chairmanship

of KSS in December, and I look forward to

working with David and the Board of Trustees

to continue Helen’s great work.”

Helen Bowcock said: “It has been a great

honour to have served as Chair of KSS, an

exceptional charity which has delivered an

outstanding performance. My successor Barney

Burgess brings superb qualities and experience

to this role and I wish him, the other trustees

and the Senior Leadership Team, so ably led by

David Welch, the very best for the future.”

Andrew Rhodes said: “It is a huge honour

for me to serve the charity as a trustee and I

am very much looking forward to supporting

Barney in his new role. KSS has excelled

during the last few years under Helen’s

leadership, with being graded as Outstanding

by the CQC one of a great number of

exceptional achievements, and will have a very

exciting future under Barney’s leadership.”

Michael Docherty said: “It has been a privilege

to serve alongside and learn from Helen who

has made such an incredible contribution to

KSS. I hope to support Barney in continuing

Helen’s legacy of elevating the impact of the

organisation while enhancing governance.”

David Welch, CEO of KSS, said: “On behalf

of Team KSS, I convey sincere thanks to

Helen for her transformative leadership, which

has been a catalyst for the extraordinary

achievements of this charity over the past six

years. Helen has been pivotal in developing

a culture of continuous improvement at KSS,

crucial to achieving our vision. We would not

be where we are without Helen’s dedication to

KSS, and I am extremely grateful.”

“I now look forward to Barney’s leadership,

which I know will help us to build on our

achievements to date. Barney’s expertise and

first-hand experience of KSS will be highly

valuable as we continue to grow.”

WHY NOT WRITE FOR US?

Ambulance UK welcomes the submission of

clinical papers and case reports or news that

you feel will be of interest to your colleagues.

Material submitted will be seen by those working within the public and private

sector of the Ambulance Service, Air Ambulance Operators, BASICS Doctors etc.

All submissions should be forwarded to info@mediapublishingcompany.com

If you have any queries please contact the publisher Terry Gardner via:

info@mediapublishingcompany.com

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

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163


COMPANY NEWS

EBERSPAECHER AIRTRONIC 3:

NEW GENERATION OF AIR HEATERS

FOR ALL PERFORMANCE CLASSES

• Compact, comfortable, and efficient

• Four model variants in 12 versions for 2 to 8 kW heating performance

• Pleasant warmth in commercial and special vehicles

In 2021 Eberspaecher will be rolling out the third-generation

Airtronic. The new generation of air heaters is entirely newly

developed and available across all performance classes (2 to

8 kW) for commercial and special vehicles. The product family

will include four model variants in 12 versions and therefore,

offer the right heating solutions for every demand. Userfriendly

operating elements ensure simple and flexible control

of heaters.

For the third generation of the Airtronic, thermal management expert

Eberspaecher is relaunching its proven fuel operated air heater family

and raising it to a new technical level across all performance classes.

Four model variants will cover deployment in many commercial

and special vehicles. Whether in recreational vehicles, transporters,

ambulances, trucks, boats, or in driver’s cabs in the off-highway-sector:

The all-rounder from Eberspaecher provides comfortable heat.

Features for functionality and comfort in a new design

All product variants come with the proven brushless motor for a longer

service life as well as the stepless heat output control and the optimized

metering pump for quiet operation – an advantage when traveling in

a camper or during break times in a truck. The combustion chamber,

which has been fully redesigned across all versions, gives greater

flexibility in installing the heater in the vehicle. The new heat exchanger

ensures better flow ratios within the heater itself and therefore, higher

efficiency. The modified positioning of the temperature sensor has

further improved the temperature control. Sensor-controlled sequences

make the start-up phase even more efficient. The Airtronic 3 variants

come with the electronic interfaces CAN (12/24V), LIN (12V), and S+

(12/24V). The further integrated automatic altitude adjustment makes

the Airtronic 3 ideal for trips in the mountains: The integrated barometric

pressure sensor optimizes consumption levels and enables automatic

adjustment at altitudes of up to 5,500 meters, depending on the version.

A newly designed exterior also sets the new air heater apart from its

predecessors.

Four model variants in 12 versions

The third Airtronic generation comprises four model variants in a total

of 12 versions: The Airtronic S3 (2 kW), the Airtronic M3 (4 kW), the

Airtronic L3 (6 kW) and the Airtronic XL3 (8 kW). Thus, the product family

meets all requirements, no matter the size of the vehicle or how cold the

outside temperature. The Airtronic S3 and Airtronic M3 is available as

a Diesel or gasoline version. For applications with longer air ducts, the

Airtronic M3 Recreational is especially suitable, thanks to its increased

air flow.

Airtronic 3 product family: Overview of performance classes and application areas:

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

Airtronic S3

Commercial

Commercial

Airtronic M3

Recreational

Airtronic L3

Commercial

Airtronic XL3

Commercial

Fuel type Gasoline Diesel Gasoline Diesel Gasoline Diesel Gasoline Diesel

Voltage (in V) 12 12 / 24 12 12 / 24 12 12 / 24 12 / 24 24

Heating

performance

(in kW)

Examples for

application

areas

1 – 2 0.85 – 2.2 1.3 – 4 1.05 – 4 1.3 – 4 1.05 – 4 1.5 – 6 2 – 7.6

• Recreational vehicles

• Boats

• Driver’s cabin of trucks

• Off-highway vehicles

Ambulances

• Recreational vehicles

• Driver’s cab of trucks

• Transporters

• Applications with the

need of higher air

flow, e.g. recreational

vehicles or boats

• Transporters

Ambulance

• Mini-/ Midi-Busses

• Recreational vehicles

• Big boats (e.g.

sightseeing boats)

• Cargo

164

For more news visit: www.ambulanceukonline.com


COMPANY NEWS

Suitable operating element for every application

Depending on requirements, the heaters of the Airtronic 3 product family

are controlled with the appropriate element. These include EasyStart

Pro: The pre-heater can be controlled easily and comfortably using the

permanently installed operating element. The desired start time and

heating duration can be set in advance with a timer. The display and

an LED color ring around the control knob indicate the current function

status. In Europe, digital control via EasyStart Web is also available:

Using a digital device – for example a smartphone, Amazon’s Alexa,

or any other Internet-enabled device – the pre-heater can be operated

no matter the range. The heater can also be integrated into preexisting

vehicle systems via the various interfaces.

About Eberspaecher:

With approximately 10,000 employees at 80 locations worldwide,

the Eberspaecher Group is one of the automotive industry’s leading

system developers and suppliers. The family business, headquartered

in Esslingen am Neckar, stands for innovative solutions in exhaust

technology, automotive electronics and thermal management for a broad

range of vehicle types. In combustion or hybrid engines and in e-mobility,

the components and systems from Eberspaecher ensure greater comfort,

higher safety and a clean environment. Eberspaecher is paving the way

for future technologies - mobile and stationary fuel cell applications,

synthetic fuels as well as the use of hydrogen as an energy carrier. In

2020, the Group generated revenue of more than 4.9 billion euros.

AVS SUPPLY STEPS FOR MAJOR

UK AMBULANCE FLEET!

Producer of side steps for passenger and emergency service

vehicles, AVS Steps, are pleased to have worked with longserving

ambulance manufacturer, O&H Vehicle Technology,

to supply a major UK ambulance fleet with their new manual

folding step!

AVS Steps have been leading the way in the production of vehicle side

steps for passenger and emergency service vehicles since 2002 and

have proven to be some of the most popular on the market. Since the

acquisition of AVS in 2017 by the Rhino Products Group, the company

has undergone extensive improvements to ensure increased reliability

and functionality.

The Fold Step is a completely new product for AVS and is a striking

new folding step design. It’s all new features include single action

dampers to slow the step during deployment, a built-in easy grip

handle to aid stowing and deployment, easy maintenance thanks to

easily replaceable pivots and much more. The new and upgraded step,

thanks to its premium look and feel, is now the step of choice for many

emergency service and passenger fleets across the UK.

All AVS steps are manufactured at their dedicated factory in Deeside,

Flintshire. This factory houses all AVS production, as well as a team

of talented engineers and designers, who ensure innovation and

continuous product development.

O&H Vehicle Technology (part of the Venari Group) is the UK’s longestserving

ambulance manufacturer, supplying the NHS and wider

emergency and specialist vehicle market. Partnering with O&H, AVS

Steps recently worked with a major UK ambulance fleet, to supply and

fit the latest addition to the AVS catalogue, the all-new FoldStep.

AVS are set to announce a further new product to market in 2022, with

details to be announced later this year. The full AVS Steps range can be

found on a newly redesigned website (www.avsteps.co.uk), alongside

product data sheets, technical information and further high resolution

imagery.

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

For the latest Ambulance Service News visit: www.ambulancenewsdesk.com

165


COMPANY NEWS

ERS MEDICAL SUPPORTS

ALZHEIMER’S SOCIETY WITH

RECYCLING SCHEME

National health and social care transport company ERS

Medical is supporting Alzheimer’s Society with a recycling

scheme to turn unwanted items into vital funds for the charity.

Run by Alzheimer’s Society and Recycling for Good Causes, the

scheme provides businesses with recycling boxes to donate unwanted

technology products, old and broken jewellery, foreign coins, cameras

and stamps. A free courier pickup can be arranged for donated items

with a combined weight over 10kgs.

Rolled out across over 20 ERS Medical sites across the country, the

scheme welcomes donations of:

• Old jewellery - Jewellery of any kind, including broken and unwanted

items

• Foreign coins - All coins and notes accepted, including obsolete

currency

• Cameras - Old film, digital and video

Andrew Pooley, Managing Director at ERS Medical, says: “Alzheimer’s

Society is our corporate charity partner and we’re always looking at

new ways to raise awareness and funds to support them. This recycling

scheme is a huge positive in the right direction as it encourages

environmentally friendly behaviours while generating vital funds for the

charity.”

Julie Lee, Community Fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Society, said: “We are

thrilled that ERS Medical are supporting our recycling campaign with

staff donating their unwanted items and converting them into much

needed funds.”

“We rely heavily on our kind supporters taking on such activities to

enable us to support people living with dementia, campaign on their

behalf and fund research.

More information can be found regarding the Alzheimer’s Recycling

scheme at www.alzheimers.org.uk/recycling

• Stamps - Loose stamps, albums, first day covers, presentation packs,

collections, postcard collections

• Technology - Sat-navs, iPods, MP3 players, DVD players, games

consoles, laptops, tablets, iPads and more

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

166

For further recruitment vacancies visit: www.ambulanceukonline.com


COMPANY NEWS

WHY 4,438 DAILY FALLS IN UK CARE

HOMES DESERVE OUR ATTENTION

A recent report,’ “Responding to falls in care homes: two

innovations” by Dr Mark Hawker and River Rea from Involve,

discusses how best practice in post fall management can provide

time and cost savings to the wider health and social care system.

Combining benefits of assistive lifting technology and video-based

clinical support could return costs savings of up to £3,911 per fall, whilst

also safeguarding residents’ lives.

The report goes on to discuss the importance of reducing the risk

of spreading infectious diseases by eliminating avoidable contacts.

There are clear benefits of using technologies that reduce the

number of external contact such as those that would be required

to pick up a resident following a fall. While difficult to quantify, the

reduction of contacts with healthcare workers such as paramedics,

GPs and district nurses with residents is seen as essential during a

pandemic.

Across the 15,000 + care homes registered by the Care Quality

Commission there are between 270,000 – 1,620,000 falls per year. As

one of the most frequently reported accidents among residents, falls

represent a pressing issue for providers of care, particularly as demand

for places is expected to rise as the population ages.

Author, Dr Mark Hawker says, “the risk factors for falls in care setting are

diverse and the multiplicity of elements influencing the likelihood of falls

makes them incredibly difficult to eliminate entirely. For the individual, the

consequences of a fall are numerous and distressing, while the repetitive

lifting requirement of carers puts them at risk of musculoskeletal injury.

“The pilot studies we’ve examined demonstrate that by giving care

home staff the tools to empower safe lifting reduces the time residents

spend on the floor after a fall waiting for an ambulance and help to

arrive. Organised and safe post fall care is better for the resident and

more cost effective for the NHS.”

Mangar Health CEO Simon Claridge adds, “we have been working

with NHS Ambulance Trusts for nearly 20 years and yet this report

has been incredibly eye opening for us. We know lifting fallen care

home residents is a daily challenge to prioritising ambulance calls,

yet equipment and technology could easily lift the considerable

pressures they are under and save the NHS millions annually.

“We would like to call on NHS England, NICE and CQC to review

the dynamics involved in a resident fall detailed in this report and

consider alternative care models in a post pandemic environment.”

Anyone wishing to receive a copy of the report should email

hello@involve.vc.

For more information email cbirt@mangarhealth.com

Mangar Health

Tel: 01544 267674

VCS WELCOMES IAN SCHOFIELD AS

SALES ENGINEERING MANAGER

The UK’s market-leading ambulance and police vehicle

conversion specialist, VCS, has appointed experienced

technical sales and aftersales specialist, Ian Schofield, to

the role of Sales Engineering Manager.

Having started work in the automotive sector as an apprentice in the

early 1980s, Ian has held numerous service and sales-focused roles

in his near-40-year career. These this includes more than a decade’s

experience working in the emergency services sector, where he held

senior sales, aftersales and quality-focused roles.

As Sales Engineering Manager at VCS, Ian will be a crucial conduit

between VCS’s sales and technical teams. This ensures that it

can provide an even greater depth of clarity and detail for VCS

customers, especially when working on complex and large-scale

projects.

Speaking about his appointment, Ian Schofield said: “I really am

very pleased to be working with VCS. It’s great to be part of such a

forward thinking, innovative company. After a decade of working in

the emergency services sector, I’ve come to admire VCS, and it’s

great to finally be working on some of its ground-breaking projects.”

Mark Kerrigan, Managing Director at VCS, said: “The wealth of

experience demonstrated by Ian is outdone only by his incredible

ability and understanding of the emergency service sector. I have

known Ian for many years and am sure that he be a great credit to

the entire VCS team and our customers.”

AMBULANCE UK - OCTOBER

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167


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