9 July 2012
Secretary of State for Health, Andrew
Lansley, visited the London Ambulance Service event control room
today to meet staff and hear about Olympic planning.
The minister heard first hand about the Service’s role during
the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
With demand expected to increase by between four and five per
cent the Service has drafted in over 200 staff from other ambulance
trusts, has 66 new ambulances and a temporary Olympic deployment
centre in place. There will be over 400 staff working at Games
London Ambulance Service’s Deputy Chief Executive, Martin
Flaherty, said: “We have been planning for the Games since 2007 and
- with less than three weeks to go – it’s great to have the
opportunity to show Mr Lansley how we are ready.”
Mr Lansley visited the event control room, Bow, East London,
which will manage the day-to-day response to the 2012 Games. He met
call takers who will take emergency calls and dispatch vehicles to
Olympic venues. He also chatted to paramedics who will work in
venues and were involved in the London Organising Committee Olympic
and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) test events.
Mr Flaherty said: “We’re very well practiced at covering
large-scale events, such as the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebration
and are one of the world’s most experienced ambulance services at
managing big sporting events. However, it will be a challenge for
us to be so busy over such an extended period of time.”
During the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the London
Ambulance Service will be providing support to the LOCOG – the main
first aid and emergency healthcare provider at Games venues. Staff
will be working closely alongside LOCOG inside venues and will be
taking any patients to hospitals.
Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley, said: “The Olympic
and Paralympic Games are our opportunity to show the best that
Britain can offer, including showcasing the excellent services of
the NHS frontline.
“I am confident that, with these extra frontline staff and new
vehicles throughout the busy Games period, the London Ambulance
Service will be able to maintain the high quality ambulance service
that thousands of Londoners experience every day.
“Frontline ambulance staff in London have had a lot of practice
in recent times at helping to ensure that major national events run
smoothly and that people who need help, can get it as quickly as
Mr Flaherty added: “We are delighted to be welcoming the Games
to London and playing a part in delivering a safe and successful
- Ends -
Notes to editors:
- Pictures available – please contact the London Ambulance
Service communications department on 020 7783 2286.
- Of the 400 staff working at venues during Games time, around
200 will be from other ambulance trusts.
- The Service was awarded £7.6m (2012/13 financial year) to help
fund additional resources during Games time. This includes a £1m
contingency fund to cover any additional activity or costs.
- The Service anticipates an average increase in demand of
between four and five percent during Games time. However this may
be higher at peak times.
The event control room is already used for large-scale events, such
as Notting Hill Carnival, London Marathon and major pre-planned
protests. It has capacity for up to 35 members of staff. All 999
calls are answered as normal in the emergency operations room (in
Waterloo headquarters). The patient’s information is taken by the
call taker, however, if the location of the incident is within the
event area, the call is automatically passed to the event control
room, where staff dispatch resources (eg ambulance crew, cycle
responder, foot teams etc). The event control room will be open 24
hours a day during Games time.
- For further information about the London Ambulance Service or
this news release please contact the communications department on
020 7783 2286
- Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ldn_ambulance