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ORGANISERS of a potentially life-saving emergency response service in Dymock are issuing an urgent call for new recruits.
Dymock’s Community First Responder (CFR) team is comprised of civilian first-aiders who live locally and are trained to provide emergency treatment in the first few minutes before paramedics arrive on the scene.
But recently numbers in the group have dwindled from six to just two.
Now co-ordinator Andrew Winterbotham said more people are desperately needed if they are to maintain the level of service of the past year.
In the last 12 months they have provided a total of 800 hours of on-call coverage and have attend medical emergencies on six different occasions.
He said this need has been highlighted recently when incidents occurred but there were no CFRs on call in Dymock to respond.
“Fortunately on those occasions it did not make a difference but on another we might not be so lucky,”
“Having the ability to provide response in just a few minutes or from within the community can make the difference between life and death.”
He said numbers had fallen due to people losing interest or their commitments changing, and urged local people to step in and fill the gap.
He said: “It really is a vital service, particularly in more rural areas such as this.
“You can be talking about 20-30 minutes for paramedics to arrive but we can be there in five minutes.”
Mr Winterbotham said he was also discussing the possibility of firefighters from Newent, who are trained to provide responder coverage, extending the area in which they cover to incorporate Dymock.
Members of the Dymock CFRs meet monthly with their neighbours from Newent, Highnam and Kempley to enhance their skills and new recruits are given all the training they require for free by St John Ambulance.
Anyone interested in getting involved as a community first responder can contact Mr Winterbotham on 01531 890734.