13 Jun 2013

NZ paramedics provide basic training to Samoan counterparts

3:19 pm on 13 June 2013

Two Wellington paramedics and a doctor are in Samoa this week to help provide basic medical training and equipment to ambulance drivers on the main island of Upolo.

Byron Williams, from the New Zealand based Vivere Trust, says ambulances in Samoa are operated by fire fighters who just drive people to the hospital without any form of clinical support or pain relief.

He says the charity will be spending the week providing basic training so they can treat patients better.

"They're learning how to use airway jumps and how to use oxygen reservoirs to help ventilate a patient and also how to check somebody's blood glucose levels to help cope with diabetic emergencies. So it's very much an entry level into what could further progressions for them."

Byron Williams says they have brought 200 kilogrammes of donated goods, including bandages, medical equipment and waterproof jackets for the Samoan ambulance service.