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Community responder team launched in Spelthorne

19 November 2010

A community first responder team has been launched in Spelthorne in partnership with South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Trust (SECAmb).

Community first responders are members of the local community who are trained to attend certain medical emergencies – such as patients with chest pains or breathing difficulties, or who have suffered a cardiac arrest.

Responders are always supported by an ambulance but, because they live or work locally, they may be the first to reach a patient and administer potentially life-saving treatment.

SECAmb’s Responder Operations Manager for Surrey, Peter Glover met recently with the first responders in the new Spelthorne team.

He said: “We are delighted to welcome these wonderful people to our community responder network. They will support the work of the ambulance service and help to improve outcomes for patients.

“SECAmb is a high-performing trust but is continually striving to deliver better patient care at the earliest opportunity. This has been achieved in part by working in partnership with volunteers who simply want to make a difference and serve their community.”

SECAmb runs the community responder scheme which currently has more than 400 trained responders across the Trust’s region of Kent, Surrey and Sussex.

Training includes how to use a defibrillator which can restart the heart of a patient in cardiac arrest. Clinical evidence shows that the chance of surviving a cardiac arrest drops with every minute that a patient does not receive treatment, but with early treatment and the use of a defibrillator a patient’s chance of survival can increase by up to 75 percent.

If anyone would like to know more about training to join the Spelthorne scheme they can contact Peter Glover by email at

Further information on SECAmb’s community responder network is available at: or by contacting the community responder team on 01273 897861


Notes to editor:

• South East Coast Ambulance Service was formed on 1 July 2006, following the merger of Kent, Surrey and Sussex ambulance trusts and is one of 11 ambulance services operating in England. It covers an area of 3,600 square miles and a resident population of 4.5 million across East and West Sussex, Brighton & Hove, Kent and Medway and Surrey. The trust responds to 999 calls from the public, immediate and urgent calls from health professionals, as well as providing non-emergency Patient Transport Services (pre-booked patient journeys to and from healthcare facilities) in some areas.  It employs more than 3,000 staff across 60 sites, more than half of whom are paramedics and ambulance technicians.

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