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Frequently Asked Questions

Do we have to pay to join?

Absolutely not – your time is payment enough!

All training / equipment / clothing will be provided (subject to funds).

Who can be a Responder?

Volunteers must be over 18 years of age, physically fit (reasonably), have a full drivers licence (category B), living / working inside the 6km radius, have their own car and be fully insured.

What do we expect from you as a Responder?

A professional approach to being a Responder is essential. We want reliable, conscientious people to respond to 999/112 calls effectively and efficiently to provide pre-ambulatory arrival care. Patients are to be treated with respect, reassured and shown understanding at all times. Responders will be expected to attend calls dressed appropriately. It is essential they carry ID cards and wear hi-viz clothing which will be provided, when attending calls.

All Responders are expected to provide care up to but not exceeding the level of their training. Also, all details regarding patients including their condition and treatment are strictly confidential.

How is this scheme funded?

At present we are approaching local businesses to source funding. We are also looking into other possible funding options one of which is through local government grant schemes. Our dedicated committee will continue to seek funding from every possible source. Anyone who registers interest in becoming a Responder will be kept informed of all developments at future meetings.

Do we need experience / training?

No experience necessary. Training will be given by the Response Unit to all members regardless of qualifications. Responders will have to meet our training team standards before they will rostered for calls. This training to Cardiac First Response (CFR) level will be PHECC (Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council) accredited.

How will I get to a call?

You will respond in your own private vehicle. Please see below for National Ambulance Service Vehicle Policy.


7.5.1 Where First Responders provide their own transport either using private cars, each Responder must ensure that they have adequate insurance for the vehicle being used. Evidence of insurance cover will be required by the NAS. Each First Responder should ensure that they have informed their insurer of their First Responder activity. This information will be held by the Scheme Co-ordinator / Committee.

7.5.2 It is the responsibility of each First Responder to maintain their vehicle in a safe and roadworthy condition. The NAS/Scheme will not be held responsible under any circumstances. Transport of patients in a First Responder vehicle is not recommended.

7.5.3 The NAS will not be held responsible under any circumstances for any vehicle excise duty, NCT, insurance premiums or any other sum payable in respect of the vehicle. (Including any hire purchase or loan repayments in respect of the vehicle).

7.5.4 The vehicle must not under any circumstances be fitted with any permanent or temporary emergency warning devices including but not limited to blue lights, sirens and headlamp flash units. The vehicle must not be fitted with any reflective / non reflective stripes, badges or other signage.

7.5.5 On route to an incident you have no priority over any other motorist. The manual flashing of headlamps is misleading to other motorists and should be performed only in accordance with the Rules of the Road. For your own safety, the equipment must be stored and transported in the boot of the vehicle. Whilst driving to an incident you must concentrate on the standard of your driving.

7.5.6 You must stop in a safe location to undertake other activities such as using the mobile phone or to read a map. You must ensure you park safely and in accordance with the Rules of the Road and any applicable local parking bylaws. Should you need to park in a position that may be considered hazardous, you may display, the vehicles hazard lights to warn other road uses of your presence. This should only be used whilst stationary.

7.5.7 Should you be involved in any accident whilst en route to an incident you must stop and provide details in accordance with the Rules of the Road. The accident should be communicated to the NAS / Scheme as soon as possible.

7.5.8 Should you have any concerns as to your safety at scene, remain in your car and if safe to do so, drive on. Your must advise Ambulance Control as soon as possible.

7.5.9 There may be occasions when en route to an incident, traffic congestion and the action of other road users will increase stress and anxiety. Your must learn to recognise this natural heightened response of the body and maintain control of your actions.

What insurance do I need to have?

Below is the ‘Liability’ section of the NAS CFR policy.


7.7.1 NAS liability cover is provided by the State Claims Agency.

7.7.2 First Responders, activated by the NAS, are classed as agents of the NAS.

7.7.3 The NAS has extended its Employer Liability, Clinical Indemnity Scheme and Public Liability to cover members of First Responders Schemes engaged in authorised activities and working within their scope of practice, e.g. Cardiac First Responder.

7.7.4 In the case of a criminal prosecution, First Responders will be represented by the Clinical Indemnity Scheme, as are all other members of the HSE staff including NAS employees.

7.7.5 First Responders must have sufficient car insurance for the purposes of the Scheme and evidence of this will be required by the NAS / Scheme on an annual basis.

7.7.6 You are advised to ensure that by operating as a First Responder you do not invalidate any personal insuring arrangements that you may have, include life or critical illness cover.