The Helions Bumpstead First Responder Scheme was set up in 2002, and after a lot of fund raising and support from the village it went live in November of 2002 with a team of 8 volunteers.
Helions First Responders call sign Zulu 24 are volunteers from the community who are trained by Essex Ambulance Service to give immediate care to patients with Life Threatening Conditions.
The single most important factor in survival is the period between the patient collapsing to them being defibrillated to restart their heart. It may sound dramatic, but with the correct training almost anyone can save a life. Community First Responders attend certain emergency calls where time can make the difference between life and death.
Our role maybe just to give reassurance, open a patients airway or the use of oxygen therapy equipment or a defibrillator. We provide the ambulance service with an immediate local response to cases where minutes can save lives � people with chest pains, breathing difficulties, Cardiac arrest, choking or unconsciousness. In these instances the Ambulance Control Centre calls us (on a dedicated mobile phone) at the same time as they are despatching their emergency vehicle. Once the ambulance crew arrives the First Responder hands the patient over and assists the crew if required.
All Essex Ambulance First responders are regularly reassessed and examined in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the use of the defibrillator by staff at Ambulance HQ.
Our Responders volunteer to be on call at times convenient to them, and a monthly rota is then put together by the group co-ordinator. The team aims to provide 24-hour cover seven days a week depending on the volunteers other commitments.
As well as the reassessments by the Ambulance Service the group meets as often as they can, joining up with Steeple Bumpstead First Responders for joint training nights.
The Helions group also hold free training sessions at the village hall during the year with basic instruction on what to do in an emergency being given to villagers.
Both Helions and Steeple responders also provide cover for each other�s village should either one not be available. Helions also provides cross -border cover for the villages of Castle Camps and Shudy Camps and the surrounding hamlets in Cambridgeshire.
The scheme can be incredibly rewarding as you could well end up saving someone�s life. Many villages where schemes exist show great community spirit, knowing that there are people there who could be lifesavers.
For more information on the Helions First Responder Scheme or if you are interested in joining please contact our group co-ordinator: Mark Milsom on Helions Bumpstead 730 520.