A TOTAL of 30 staff from West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) will be heading south to support London Ambulance Service (LAS) during the Olympics.

The team, comprising 25 clinicians, three emergency operations centre staff and two senior venue commanders, will be in the Olympic Park to ensure that emergency medical aid is on hand for spectators, officials and athletes in and around the sporting venue.

They will leave for London next Monday, in readiness for the opening ceremony on Friday, July 27, and will join about 180 other frontline ambulance staff dedicated to working in games venues.

The team completed an intense four-day familiarisation and accreditation training course with LAS and the special training covered a broad range of areas from general introductions to the games and their role within it to treating patients with a range of disabilities.

In May, WMAS joined ambulance staff from across England for Exercise Amber, which tested their skills in dealing with a range of scenarios including patients on boats, up scaffolding and under rubble.

The team will then return to the West Midlands on August 12, before 15 of the original 30 return to LAS to provide medical cover at the Paralympics.

Thirteen staff have also been selected to provide medical cover at each of the 12 Olympic football matches being hosted at the City of Coventry Stadium during July and August.

Steve Wheaton, assistant chief ambulance officer, said: “We’re delighted to be helping London’s ambulance service during what is recognised worldwide as the greatest sporting event on earth.The Olympics is about participation and demonstrating the best in sporting ability.

“As an ambulance service we’re showing the rest of the world that our emergency services pull together to support each other when it matters the most to provide the best care possible to patients.

“For our staff heading to London and working at the City of Coventry Stadium, it really is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”