Lifesaving partnership launched

Monday, 03 August, 2009

South Western Ambulance Service and Butlins in Minehead have joined forces to provide a network of support to visitors to the Somerset attraction. A group of volunteers known as responders have been trained by the Trust to provide emergency life support to patients whilst an ambulance is on its way. These responders, who all work within the resort, will also serve Minehead residents when off duty as community first responders.

This group comprises of nine Butlins team members, who are trained to use the static defibrillators on site in the event of someone suffering a cardiac arrest. The group has already
attended a number of incidents since their formation, but fortunately none of these have been life threatening situations.

Tony Stokes, the Somerset County Community Engagement Manager for South Western Ambulance Service NHS Trust, said: "This very important partnership would not have been possible to establish without the support of Julian Highfield, the General Manager for the Minehead resort. In addition to allowing staff to be trained during duty time, he has let the Trust use the onsite training facilities, as well as supporting fundraising efforts to provide the responders with additional kit."

Julian Highfield, Resort Director for Butlins, Minehead said: "We take our guests' health and safety extremely seriously and any way we can improve the way we look after them should something unfortunate happen is really important to us. It is also an honour that our team members can help support the Trust should it need it outside the resort, and is a fantastic way in which we can put a little something back into our local community.

I would like to thank Tony Stokes and the Trust for giving us the opportunity to increase the skill set of our fantastic team and be involved in such a worthwhile way."

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