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Health and Safety

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TRUEresult Blood Glucose System

A considerable number of employees have contacted me with regard to a new, smaller blood sugar testing device that has appeared on our emergency vehicles. The majority of employees have voiced their concerns that the TRUEresult system is not suitable for use by healthcare professionals based upon what is written on the accompanying poster. I have viewed the poster and the reference appears to apply just to the lancet, which we will not be using. However there are other issues which I have become aware of and these have been notified to management in line with best practices.

Whenever the management intend to introduce changes to the workplace, practices, procedures or equipment, there is a requirement to consult with the health & safety representatives elected to represent the employees that will be affected by these proposed changes. This consultation does not appear to have taken place and so the appearance of the new device was unexpected. The Trust has stated that staffside had been involved with the procurement and evaluation of the new equipment but this is not the case. Unison have not been involved in the processes.

I have been informed that the reason for changing devices is because “The company no longer make the discs containing the test strips”. I have sent an email to Bayer to find out if this is because the test strips were no longer financially viable, unpopular or if there were other reasons.



[All information can be found in the Ferno User Manual]

  1. Operators need strength, balance, co-ordination and common sense to safely use the chair
  2. Operators should have been trained in the operation of the chair
  3. Training records should be kept and annual refresher training is recommended
  4. Operators need to have read and understood the user manual instructions
  5. Untrained operators can cause injury or be injured.
  6. Permit only trained operators to operate the chair
  7. Improper use of the chair can cause injury.
  8. Use the chair only for the purpose described in the manual.
  9. An un-restrained patient can fall off the chair and be injured.
  10. Before use ALWAYS ensure the two safety rings are positioned over the hinges
  11. ALWAYS Use restraints to secure the patient to the chair
  12. There is an adjustable handle to enable correct posture for the operator
  13. The tracks can be attached for descending stairs
  14. Using the chair on stairs requires a minimum of two operators.
  15. Use additional help when needed.
  16. If available a third person should act as guide for the foot-end operator
  17. When using as a TRACKED chair the rear handle SHOULD be raised to the highest position
  18. Ensure the route down stairs is clear of obstructions
  19. It is NOT recommended to use the rear handle highest position when using as a carry chair
  20. The chair can be used as a carry chair to move patients up stairs.
  21. The tracks should be removed from the chair when moving a patient up stairs.
  22. Prior to folding the chair for stowage or using as a carry chair the tracks MUST be removed
  23. It is recommended NOT to carry the patient with the rear handle FULLY EXTENDED
  24. Do NOT exceed the safe working load of 200Kg / 32 stone
  25. Water under pressure or steam can penetrate joints, flush away lubricant, cause corrosion.
  26. Use caution when cleaning moving parts and hinges.
  27. Do not use abrasive materials to clean the chair
  28. Clean and disinfect the chair prior to lubricating
  29. Only lubricate parts that are indicated in the user manual
  30. Do NOT lubricate the track belts as it will result in a loss of friction.


Jeff Pittman

East of England Ambulance Unison 20106

Branch Health & Safety Officer

30 November 2015



Health & Safety Update

Bases, Response Posts and DAP’s

Over the past few months we have seen an increase in staff of varying skill levels and clinical grades. Some have transferred in from other ambulance services while others have been external recruits or internal career developers. At the same time the service has continued to experience high call volumes and the added pressures that this brings. With the increase in staff and the influx of new ambulances the picture is beginning to look better, but the size of our region and the needs of the public remain the same. With all this in mind I take this opportunity to highlight a few areas and remind staff about what should be in place.

All members of staff should be in possession of a full uniform and this includes epaulettes showing their clinical grades. Operational members of staff are entitled to have 2 pairs of footwear provided and this allows for them to naturally dry out in between shifts. They should also be provided with a full set of PPE relevant to their operational role.

The maintenance and upkeep of all Trusts buildings falls within the remit of the Estates department and ANY member of staff that becomes aware of damage, faults or maintenance issues can send an email to the estates department responsible for that building. This ensures a swifter response and gets repairs carried out sooner rather than later.

All members of staff are required to undergo training in any new process or with any new equipment that they have not previously been trained on. This is to ensure that everyone is able to safely use the equipment, protects your crew partners, patients and the general public. If, during the course of your duty, you become aware of faulty or defective equipment, are injured by equipment or are involved in an adverse incident, you should raise a DATIX report either on the intranet or by calling the single Point Of Contact (SPOC). The Datix system is the method used by the Trust for auditing incidents and if the Datix is not raised the data becomes incomplete and potentially unreliable.

               WHEN IT REALLY MATTERS              

As individuals we have different needs and in our own ways we deal with most challenges that life throws at us, in our own ways. We have guidelines and protocols, policies and procedures to refer to when we are working, but an over-riding consideration is how we manage our own comfort. We are provided with a uniform so that we are easily recognisable as being members of the ambulance service and the Trust does its best to ensure that the items of clothing are robust, easy to wash and comfortable to wear. 


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