The Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust has a dedicated resilience team that works to meet the legislative obligations on the Trust under the Civil Contingencies Act (2004) and other emergency planning legislation and guidance.
There is a regional Resilience Manager in each of our three operational regions to support local management teams on resilience issues and to work as part of the areas Local Resilience Fora alongside other partner agencies. These LRFs ensure that there is a multi-agency approach to planning for and managing significant and challenging incidents which can impact on their area.
In addition to our statutory Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response (EPRR) work, the team also manages the Trust’s Specialist Operations functions through the HART locality manager who is responsible for managing the Specialist Operations Response Team (SORT), as well the Hazardous Area Response Team (HART). HART is a specialist team specially trained and equipped to deal with incidents involving hazardous chemicals, large scale incidents, flooding, working at height, firearms or in confined spaces and in areas traditionally inaccessible by normal ambulance crews.
Additionally, the team consist of a business continuity officer who supports the Trust’s business continuity agenda and a regional event planning officer who provides professional ambulance input into the planning of significant events and sporting fixtures in South East Wales.
The head of resilience oversees and manages the activities of the regional resilience managers and HART locality manager and provides a senior representation at NHS Wales, Welsh Government and UK national resilience fora.
Part of our legislative obligations is to ensure that we plan and exercise regularly with partner agencies for a variety of incident types to ensure we remain capable and reactive. We have recently introduced competency based command training for our strategic, tactical and operational command tiers, as well as providing exercising opportunities and courses to enhance our commanders’ knowledge and experience including Wales Strategic, Wales Tactical, JESIP training and live exercises with colleagues in the Wales Extremism and Counter Terrorism Unit (WECTU) to improve our preparedness to deal with the threats that exist.