Our out of hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) trials have been a great success. Since November 2015, our crews have been undertaking a role in emergency medical response, one of the five additional workstreams approved by the FBU, in partnership with the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS).
Fire appliances respond to OHCA incidents where they are closer than the nearest ambulance and administer life saving interventions while ambulance crews make their way to the scene. There are currently 18 areas taking part in the trials.
Almost 3,500 people in Scotland undergo attempted resuscitation each year after an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, with only one in 20 who live to return home.
The earlier CPR is administered the higher the chance of survival. The survival rate for people suffering cardiac arrest is being increased for those incidents attended by our crews.
From 1 November 2015 to 31 October 20176 we made 41 potential lifesaving interventions in OHCA call-outs with 15 positive outcomes – a 36 per cent success rate.
The co-responding trials have highlighted the potential to dramatically improve survival rates and also the financial benefits with a return of between £5.67 and £14.40 for every £1 invested.
We can do even more for the people of Scotland by working with our ambulance colleagues to roll out this emergency medical response nationally.