The Welsh Ambulance Service has introduced new technology to better support victims of domestic violence.
Live Fear Free is a 24/7 helpline for women, children and men experiencing domestic abuse, sexual violence or other forms of violence against women. It is a main point of contact in Wales to access support, information, safety-planning, advocacy, refuge and counselling services.
Ambulance crews have been supporting patients to access Live Fear Free for help and advice on domestic violence since its creation using a bespoke telephone number. Now crews now have the ability to assist patients via an app on their Trust-issue iPad to speed up and streamline the process.
Nikki Harvey, the Welsh Ambulance Service’s Head of Safeguarding, said, “The Live Fear Free helpline is a free, confidential 24/7 specialist resource that anyone can access, at any time. Welsh Ambulance Service crews have been using it for some years to signpost patients to help and support, using the good old fashioned telephone – until now.
“Having the technology to refer patients digitally using iPads is not only more efficient for crews, but it means that vulnerable patients get the support they need more quickly. We all deserve to live without fear and in an environment which is safe, and modernising this referral pathway brings us a step closer to that.”
Live Fear Free Helpline Manager, Ann Williams, said, “We are delighted to be working alongside the Welsh Ambulance Service, making our joint support of those most in need across Wales even more efficient.
“For staff at the helpline and the ambulance service alike, time is critical. Using updated technology means that we can strengthen vital, time-saving communication methods, which will directly benefit the women, men and children getting in touch, for whom support can often be life changing or even life-saving.”