Yorkshire Ambulance Service is recruiting in Kirklees for community first responders (CFRs).
New recruits will join hundreds of volunteers living in local communities across Yorkshire who are trained to provide life-saving treatment in the vital first minutes of an emergency, such as a heart attack.
When a 999 call is received, an ambulance response is dispatched. At the same time a CFR, on-call in the area, can be alerted. As volunteers are based within the community, they may only be a minute or two away.
CFRs are trained in basic life support skills, including cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR), defibrillation and oxygen therapy, and are equipped with an automated external defibrillator (AED), oxygen and a first aid kit.
One community first responder from Holmfirth has told of his experience volunteering.
Bill O’Brien, who began volunteering for the service in 2015, is a business owner who works full time so is mainly on-call in evenings and at weekends.
He said: “Whilst the first few incidents were daunting, the training ensured that the level of care was second nature and the support of paramedics and crews ensured a smooth transition from extreme novice to useful contributor.
“Whilst most incidents required little more than TLC for the patient and the relatives, they were a good exercise in information-gathering, which resulted in a better handover to attending clinicians. To leave a patient in the care of others knowing that they were in a much better situation than when you arrived at the job gives immense satisfaction.
“It is without doubt the most rewarding experience ever to have the ability to save a life and bring comfort into the lives of people who at the time are in a very difficult situation and really need help. Even if that assistance does not bring a successful outcome, a great deal of comfort can be shown to relatives and friends when they need it most.
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“It becomes easy to fit the role into my daily life. I consider it a better use of my time by being booked on as I sit in front of the television or computer whiling away my leisure hours.”
Subject to acceptance of applications and the completion of relevant checks, applicants attend a welcome evening and introduction to Yorkshire Ambulance Service then complete a 19-hour training course.
No previous medical experience or training is necessary, but applicants must be at least 18, able to drive and have their own car.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit communityresponders.yas.nhs.uk.