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Would you be interested in a joining a local team to help in medical emergencies? If so, you could be a volunteer First Responder. Anyone in good health aged 18 upwards can be involved — there's no upper age limit, as long as you can pass the medical check.

There are two levels of training — 'Community Responders' are trained to operate portable defibrillators. These can be positioned in a number of locations in the area as their use within minutes of a heart attack is critical. 'Co-responders', the second level, are given more training and can assist in a wider range of medical emergencies, including operating the portable defibrillators.

Last night representatives of the Parish Council and the Fire Service met the North West Ambulance Service in Audlem to arrange setting up the team of First Responders that will help provide an on-the-spot service in medical emergencies while the ambulance is on its way. The NWAS says that ideally six to twelve local people would be trained, so providing a reasonable level of cover. Already volunteers have come forward from the fire service team, but more are needed.

Full training will be provided by a specialist NWAS team. If you are interested, please let the webteam know and we will pass on your name and contact details. A meeting will be held with the volunteers on the evening of Thursday 28th February, when the NWAS will be happy to deal with any queries.

The Parish Council pressed the NWAS to ensure that setting up the First Responder service would not delay ambulance call-out times in any way and received positive confirmation that the responders would not make the decision about calling out an ambulance. That system would remain as at present.

In the meantime, if you'd like to hear more before the meeting, don't hesitate to call either Richard Furber on 811598 or Mike Hill on 811843. Both were at last night's meeting and will also attend the 28th February meeting.


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