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Police and ambulance joint response team to operate in Dartford and Gravesend

PUBLISHED: 09:06 20 August 2019 | UPDATED: 09:06 20 August 2019

The Joint Response Team. Picture: Kent Police

The Joint Response Team. Picture: Kent Police

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An emergency services partnership scheme is being rolled out to Gravesend and Dartford.

The scheme involves two police specials and a paramedic travelling together in the same vehicle to incidents where they may both be needed.

It started in February last year. Kent Police and South East Coast Ambulance Service got together to launch the Joint Response Unit in Medway and Swale.

The pilot project was seen as a good enough success to be rolled out.

It presently operates on Friday and Saturday nights between 6pm and 2am and has proved so beneficial to both organisations that the scheme is being rolled out into Dartford and Gravesham.

And rather just at weekends, the team will be out seven days a week.

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Kent police said it was also highlighted as an area of outstanding practice in the Care Quality Commission's inspection report for SECAmb published this month.

Superintendent Jason Wenlock, of Kent Police's Citizens in Policing team, said: "I am so proud of everything our specials have achieved with this scheme to date, working closely with our partners at SECAmb to provide a more effective and efficient service for members of the public.

"They have helped created the blueprint for how such an initiative can be run successfully, which regular officers in Dartford and Gravesham will now adopt in their area while the specials continue to operate in Medway and Swale.

"I have every confidence that they, too, will reap the benefits of this innovative approach to partnership working.

"We have also recently started using two new Joint Response Unit vehicles funded by SECAmb, which contain all the equipment required by Kent Police specials and regular officers to both tackle and prevent crime and by SECAmb paramedics to provide instant medical treatment to casualties.

"This is especially important when both organisations are required to attend incidents such as fights or assaults where there may be injuries."

Between May and August this year, the unit was despatched to 110 separate incidents including assaults and mental health concerns. It also prevented alcohol-related situations escalating into violence.

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