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Life-saving Volunteers Needed in Whitby

08 August 2011 08 August 2011

YORKSHIRE Ambulance Service NHS Trust is appealing to community-minded locals in Whitby to become life-saving Community First Responders.

Recruits will become part of a voluntary scheme in the town which provides immediate medical care to members of the community in the vital minutes before an ambulance arrives.

Community First Responders are groups of volunteers who live and work in the local community and are trained by Yorkshire Ambulance Service in basic life-support, Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and oxygen therapy. They are equipped with a kit which includes oxygen and an automated external defibrillator (AED) to help patients in a medical emergency such as a heart attack, collapse or breathing difficulties until the ambulance arrives. 

Paul Stevens, (pictured below) Network Response Manager (North Yorkshire) at Yorkshire Ambulance Service, said: “We know that in many medical emergencies the first few minutes are critical and if effective treatment can be performed within those minutes, lives can be saved and disability reduced.

“As volunteers are based within the community, they may only be a minute or two away and very often their role is to simply provide vital reassurance to patients and their families following a medical emergency. However, in extreme cases, such as a heart attack, they can perform CPR or use their defibrillator to restart someone’s heart which could save a life.

“Being part of this initiative can be extremely rewarding and I would encourage anyone who may be interested in helping their local community to take on the role.”

Anyone interested in becoming a Community First Responder in Whitby can meet with representatives from Yorkshire Ambulance Service who will be at The Met, Argyle Road in Whitby on Wednesday 17 August 2011 between 7pm and 9pm. Alternatively, they can contact Paul Stevens at the ambulance service, tel: 07880 558359 or email, responders@yas.co.uk

No previous first-aid experience is needed as full training will be given to successful applicants who need to be over 18, physically fit and hold a full driving licence, having never been banned from driving and with no more than three penalty points. Yorkshire Ambulance Service will also run Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks on candidates.

Produced By: Corporate Communications Department