EMS…in times of crisis

Friday, 04 December, 2015


The latest terrorist attacks which highlights the importance of effective and unified emergency medical services, will be one of the underlying messages for delegates at The Larrey Society’s conference 21 January in London.

Delegates will undoubtedly be discussing among themselves the recent terrorist attacks in Paris and the EMS response which has been graphically described by a group of French paramedics in an article in The Lancet.Sue Noyes, Chief Executive, East Midland Ambulance NHS Trust who chairs the conference has also sent this message to members:

“The debate around emergency and urgent care is one of the most critical for all of us, whether we are NHS employees or not. The response we receive from our public services when we are in a crisis situation, or a heightened level of anxiety…about our own health or that of our loved family and friends, is a key measure of the effectiveness of a society.

“Given all of the pressures we face in our world at this time, ensuring we can have the appropriate response to emergency and urgent healthcare needs is one of the most important of all our duties as citizens.”

Keynote speakers at the conference will also be discussing the pivotal role ambulance providers will have in the nation’s 21st century healthcare services.

Professor Jonathan Benger, National Clinical Director for Urgent Care, NHS England says “Healthcare services are in a state of constant change, no more so than EMS. In the UK we are moving from an ambulance service focussed on transport to hospital to an ambulance service that acts as a community-based provider of urgent care, pivotal to the urgent and emergency care system.

“As we develop and progress it is essential that we communicate and consult with all stakeholders, including EMS staff, other providers and patients to ensure that the changes that we make are the right ones, and will support the best possible outcomes for patients and improved working conditions for staff."

Professor Niroshan Siriwardena, Professor of Primary and Prehospital Healthcare at the University of Lincoln, says: “A debate about the future shape of emergency medical services (EMS) is important because continuing changes in primary care and care provided by hospitals together with changes in delivery of care by ambulance services driven by prehospital research and quality improvement initiatives mean that EMS needs to change also”.

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