Thursday, 25 July 2013
Emergency Responders 'Permanent'
As a result of that lobby, the Scottish Ambulance Service set up our Emergency Responder unit, but on a temporary basis. Yesterday, David Garbutt, Chairman of the Scottish Ambulance Service, came to Kilchoan to announce that the scheme would now be PERMANENT. 'Permanent' is a strong word, but it's both welcome and logical. It's welcome because the four good people who have carried the service forward - Jessie, Sam, Maggie and Karen - have worked incredibly hard to make it a resounding success - witness the events on the Ormsaigbeg beach earlier today, and some forty other successful call-outs. It's logical because the SAS have acknowledged that it is a so good that it should be a template for other remote, rural communities.
Mr Garbutt also announced that the evaluation of the service, something we have been pressing for, will now be both active and ongoing.
As if this weren't enough, he also launched the telehealth pilot in Kilchoan. The dedicated satellite unit now working in the Kilchoan Learning Centre will, as of 1st August, be used in emergencies to connect the Emergency Responders and their patients to A&E specialists who will be able to advise them. This is welcome because ongoing evaluation has already shown that some 40% of the casualties sent down the road to the Belford could have been dealt with locally. The pilot won't deal with children, yet, but, from what our representatives have seen of its capabilities, it looks good, and may have many other uses, for example in general practice medicine.