London’s Air Ambulance supports “medical skills for young offenders” project

London’s Air Ambulance supports “medical skills for young offenders” project

23-Sep-2012 Source: London's Air Ambulance

As London saw this year’s youngest victim of knife crime, 14-year-old Kevin Ssali, sadly die on Sunday, the need to ensure immediate, on the scene medical aid for victims of violent attacks seems to be more urgent than ever. The Liverpool project aims to train young offenders, who are often present at the scene of violent incidents, to provide immediate haemorrhage control in the vital minutes after injury until the arrival of the emergency services.

  • The Liverpool Project has been set up to teach young offenders the basic medical skills necessary to manage victims of violent attacks
  •  London’s Air Ambulance, the Charity which runs London’s helicopter emergency medical service, collaborates with the project
  • Training shows young people how to how to recognise the symptoms of blood loss, how to manage a penetrating wound, how to carry out the recovery position, how to perform CPR, how to calm the victim and how to respond when medical teams arrive
  • Recent successes have encouraged the expectation that the teaching provided by the young doctors working for the Project will directly result in a reduction in morbidity and mortality from penetrating injuries in the UK
  • Although the project started in Merseyside, it has been cascaded to several other cities in the UK and has already started work in London

London’s Air Ambulance’s doctors and paramedics attend stabbings and shootings on a daily basis and perform life saving procedures at the scene of the incident when minutes are vital for survival, however any emergency response times can never be as quick as that of a bystander.  While bystanders’ are generally not medically trained, there are important simple interventions that can be done that, with the right training, may help to improve the chances of survival.

Dr Nick Rhead from Aintree University Hospital in Liverpool and one of the founders of the  project said, “The Liverpool Project will benefit greatly from the skill and experience that London’s Air Ambulance provides and this will ultimately improve training provided to the young people – reducing morbidity and mortality from penetrating trauma, the third biggest cause of death amongst this age group.”

Commenting on the collaboration, London’s Air Ambulance Research and Development Lead, Professor David Lockey, said: “Unfortunately knife and gun crime is high amongst the young population of London and our doctors and paramedics witness the negative effects of this daily. We are delighted to collaborate with this innovative project run by committed and dynamic young medics and believe it has the potential to impact on this growing and destructive problem in London and elsewhere.  London’s Air Ambulance will provide support to the project as it develops and expands. “

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