New first responder group to launch in Swaledale

A new community first responder group will be formally launched at Low Row in Swaledale next week by local MP Rishi Sunak.

First responders are all volunteers trained in critical life saving techniques such as use of defibrillators, administering oxygen and carrying out cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

They are despatched by an NHS control desk and in areas such as Swaledale can often reach a patient to give life saving assistance within a few minutes, while an ambulance or paramedic might still be a considerable distance away.

Local knowledge of area and terrain are vitally important in saving time but there is no requirement for volunteers to have any knowledge of first aid as all the necessary equipment and training is supplied by the NHS through the Yorkshire Ambulance Service.

A rota is organised to cover as much of the week as possible and each volunteer gives as much or as little time as suits their circumstances.   The new Low Row group, maintaining close links with the existing Reeth group, will increase the area of the dales covered by this important service.

The new group will be launched at 10am on Saturday, September 9, in Low Row institute.

Team members will be on hand, along with Patrick Murphy from the Yorkshire Ambulance Service, to answer questions about the service and chat to anyone interested in becoming a volunteer. There will also be demonstrations of defibrillation and the use of other life saving equipment.

To find out more about the meeting or the CFR group contact Richard Lewis on or phone 01748-886112.