Community First Responders

Community First Responders are an integral part of patient care within the Trust. They are volunteers, trained and dispatched by North East Ambulance Service to deal with emergencies prior to the arrival of an ambulance. They are dispatched at the same time as an ambulance but may arrive first as they are nearer, and can provide early interventions in those crucial first minutes of an emergency. They will deal with a specific list of emergencies, providing care and support to both the patient and their family.

They attend medical emergencies as well as cardiac arrests, where someone’s heart has stopped beating. Responders operate across the whole of the North East in both rural and urban areas, and are a crucial part of the Chain of Survival.

There are three types of Responder within the Trust:

1. Community First Responders will generally be asked to respond to emergency calls within the area they are logged on to respond to a medical incident. They are alerted to the emergency call via the National Mobilisation App (NMA), which uses GPS to track location so you could respond in deferent areas depending on your location (e.g. work or home).

2. Co-Responders are from an existing public service (e.g. police, fire, military etc.)  Their training is the same as a Community First Responder.  They are available for emergency calls while carrying out their regular work duties.

3. Staff Responders work for the Trust in various capacities but also respond in their spare time outside work.   They can also be activated from work in times of high pressure.

Each type of responder has the same aim: to provide immediate care to a patient where every second counts.


  • Be able to commit to the Trust’s Code of Conduct
  • Be willing to undergo stringent recruitment checks including an Occupational Health Assessment, Disclosure and Barring Service check, and provide at least two references
  • Have a full driving licence
  • Have guaranteed immediate access to a reliable car when on duty which is fully insured, taxed and has an up to date MoT if applicable
  • Have informed their car insurance company of their responder role
  • Be committed to achieving and maintaining a very high standard of first aid
  • Willing and able to commit to attending training on a regular basis
  • Be responsible for the equipment when in their possession
  • Be able to leave their location within minutes when on duty
  • Be able to maintain strict patient confidentiality when responding
  • Personal commitment to respond at least 16 hours per month


  • Age restrictions
    Over 18's
  • DBS check required
  • Ongoing support
  • Training provided

When can I volunteer?

Start Date: 09/06/2023

End Date: 01/04/2025

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