Police and paramedics join forces

Tuesday, 29 January, 2008

A new initiative is being trialled in the Essex town of Harlow which aims to cut down emergency service response times and reduce hospital admissions.

Police officers on foot patrol are being teamed with a paramedic in a pilot scheme to see whether if the service Essex Police and the East of England Ambulance Service offer can be improved.

Chief Inspector Mike Martin explained, "It is early days but we think this is an excellent example of partnership working. It will mean the patrolling officer will have access to instant medical support which is hoped will reduce the number of calls from police to the ambulance service.

"Ultimately we will provide a better level of care for people. They will get initial medical help quicker and those who do not need further treatment will not be held up longer than necessary.
"The paramedic will be able to give advice, medical assistance and guidance on whether an ambulance is needed. The reduction in calls will free ambulances to respond to emergencies throughout the county."

He added, "The East of England Ambulance Service has been fantastic. We both want the initiative to work and we are both 100 per cent behind it."

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