Roddick calls for expanding role of Community First Responders

Still from a video in the Scottish Parliament debating chamber. Emma Roddick, 24yo in a black dress and grey blazer with a small blue cat pin, wearing glasses, speaks to someone off-camera.

Highlands and Islands MSP Emma Roddick has today asked the Scottish Government to consider revisiting existing restrictions on the role of Community First Responders in assisting the Scottish Ambulance Service.

Roddick urged the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care to explore further ways in which Community First Responders can aid Scottish Ambulance Service crews in a time of coronavirus pandemic-induced delays.

In her question, Roddick noted that many First Responders in her region are baffled at the fact that the army is being called in to assist the SAS before themselves, despite many of them being blue-light trained from their day jobs.

Commenting on the subject later on, Roddick said:

“At present, Community First Responders are not allowed to access blue light training and are not trained to drive ambulances, changes that many Community First Responders believe may be crucial to saving lives.

“My office has received many representations from First Responders that are at a loss as to why we are calling in external agencies and the Ministry of Defence when the service has a pool of around 1,500 volunteers ready and willing to take a more active role in supporting our ambulance service. As one of them has told me – ‘every avenue should be explored to save people’s lives.’”

Watch the interaction below: