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Ambulance and fire services capitalise on partnership

THE Welsh Ambulance Service (WAS) has teamed up with South Wales Fire and Rescue Services (SWFRS) to ensure that its emergency response vehicles are located at the ‘right place’ in Cardiff to enable it to respond to the ‘right patients’ in the ‘right time’.

People living in Cardiff will be reassured to learn that WAS has now enhanced its geographical coverage of the capital by creating deployment points at Roath Fire Station in the East, Ely Fire Station in the West and Whitchurch Fire Station in the North to complement the existing base at Blackweir Ambulance Station in the city centre.

Bob Tooby, Welsh Ambulance Head of Service for Cardiff and the Vale said: “This has been an excellent opportunity for WAS and SWFRS to work together at the right locations around the city, now providing the best possible intelligence led service to our communities and patients.

“I am extremely grateful to Assistant Chief Fire Officer Andrew Thomas and his team for working with us over several months to provide an invite to join his teams at Roath and Whitchurch Fire Station, as social deployment locations.

“Locating our ambulances and Rapid Response Vehicles on stand-by at Roath and Whitchurch Fire Station as well as the existing co-location of Ely Fire Stations, now complements our existing ambulance stations. So we do literally surround the city at each point of the compass.

"I have no doubt these locations will allow us to get to our patients quicker as well as enabling us to build excellent relationships with our colleagues at the fire and rescue service.

“It would be remiss of me not to mention our colleagues from the three WAS operational unions and the equivalent FBU fire union, all of whom have remained totally committed to these patient and community focused improvements.”

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Andrew Thomas added: “We are happy to share our stations with WAS crews to ensure that they have key strategic points with which to deploy and reach patients within the ‘right time’.

"Our continued collaboration and partnership with our ambulance colleagues gives our communities across South Wales peace of mind that their safety and wellbeing is paramount.”

The new deployment points were piloted in August of this year and launched last month by the Chairman of the Welsh Ambulance Service Mick Giannasi who said: “Ambulance stations and social deployment points don’t save lives but locating our response vehicles in the heart of the area where we expect our next call enables our highly trained clinicians to respond to emergencies more quickly and that can make a real difference for patients.

"I am very grateful to the SWFRS for their continued support for the WAS and hope that this is just the latest initiative in our ongoing partnership to make Wales a safer place to live, work and visit.”