London Ambulance Service to travel to Tripoli to aid patient evacuation process

The London Ambulance Service is coordinating the evacuation of up to 50 Libyan patients to the UK for treatment and rehabilitation.

Abdul Malik, first Libyan patient, being put into ambulance by paramedicsA senior manager from the Service is travelling to Tripoli today with NHS colleagues to put processes in place to assess the patients and establish the most appropriate care for their condition. A senior clinician from the Department of Health will match their individual needs to a suitable UK hospital and the Service will make all the logistical arrangements and arrange the transfer to a nearby airport. The patient will be collected from the airport by the local ambulance trust.

Director of Operations, Richard Webber, said: “We aim to establish local links in Tripoli, work out how best to transfer the patient and determine the need for further personnel to be deployed. By the end of the week we expect to be working round the clock to support the transfer of patients to UK hospitals.”

Last week the London Ambulance Service coordinated the clinical transfer of the first patient, Abdul Malek Elhamdi, from Tripoli to the UK. He is now being treated at St Mary’s Hospital in west London.

The Libyan Embassy Medical Director, Abdul Shlebak, thanked the Service on Abdul’s successful transfer to the UK. He said: “Thank you very much for your expert help with the transfer of Abdul. The Embassy team is very grateful for your assistance and professionalism.”

The London Ambulance Service is working with Department of Health, the UK Border Agency, Foreign and Commonwealth Office as well as other ambulance and hospital trusts across the UK on the transfer of a further 49 victims of conflict to the UK. The first patients are expected to start arriving at the end of this week.

The full cost of care for all patients is being met by the Libyan government. Additional resources are being brought in to facilitate the transfer and will not impact on the service to Londoners

Notes to editors: