London paramedics require assistance at 200 homes

Staff of the London Ambulance Service (LAS) have been advised not to visit more than 200 homes without police assistance.

The information comes following a freedom of information request, which revealed that of 390 households on LAS’ Location Alert Register, 226 fell under its most serious classifications.

The alert register is divided into four categories, with the 226 homes falling under categories one and two, where physical violence, threats with a weapon or ‘aggravated verbal abuse’ lead to the need for a police call-out.

However, LAS paramedics were told that they should only delay treatment to patients and await police arrival if they felt they were personally at risk.

Leo Nakhimoff, a paramedic for LAS, was assaulted whilst on duty last year:

‘When you’re going about your daily job treating patients you don’t expect to get attacked with a fence post—it was completely unprovoked,’ he said.

‘It affected me quite badly at the time and I questioned whether I wanted to continue working as a paramedic. It’s now at the back of my mind when I get called to similar incidents.

‘At the end of the day, we’re here to help people and we don’t want to be in fear of being attacked.’

Taken from Journal of Paramedic Practice, published 28 August 2013.

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