Friday 5th January 2018 – 6.00pm – Murray MacGregorT
The ground-breaking documentary, ‘Ambulance’ on BBC One was one of the most watched programmes of 2017 and we’re delighted to confirm that the camera crews are back filming with West Midlands Ambulance Service gathering stories for a new series.
The programme will feature ambulance crews from across the region helping patients in their hour of need as well as staff in the Trust’s two emergency operations centres. Filming started at the end of November and included cameras following staff on the road and in the control rooms on New Year’s Eve, traditionally the busiest time of the year.
The new programmes follow Series 2 which also featured the West Midlands and brought in audience of over 4 million per episode.
The series will feature ambulance crews from across the region helping patients in their hour of need as well as staff in the Trust’s two emergency operations centres. Filming started at the end of November and included cameras following staff on the road and in the control rooms on New Year’s Eve, traditionally the busiest time of the year.
The new series is expected to broadcast later in the year.
Trust Chief Executive, Anthony Marsh, said: “What is unique about this programme is the way that it intermingles the work of the staff in our control rooms with those on the ambulances responding to calls. We get to see the entire journey from the moment the 999 call is received through the help provided over the phone; the way ambulances are dispatched and the work of the crews on the ground.
“The thing that came across so strongly from the first series was the incredible professionalism of our staff as they deal with the challenges that they are presented with, never knowing what the next call might bring.
“I am sure we will see cases of heart-warming joy to the most tragic of events; but throughout, our staff will provide care and compassion to all of those affected; something I am incredibly proud of.”
Covering a diverse region of more than 5,000 square miles – the filming will follow crews from every corner of the West Midlands; from inner city Birmingham to the rural areas of Herefordshire and the Staffordshire Moorlands.
During the programmes, you’ll get to see how the staff deal with an increasingly busy service with some days over 4,000 999 calls. It will look at the way the Trust deals with an ageing population and the challenges of working with out-of-hours services and GP surgeries as well A&E departments who are also getting increasingly busy.
Kirsty Cunningham, Executive Producer with Dragonfly Television who are making the programme, said: “We are thrilled to be back with the fabulous crews and control teams at West Midlands Ambulance Service for a new eight-part series of Ambulance for BBC1.
“Audiences can look forward to seeing some of their favourite paramedics, technicians, doctors, controllers and call assessors back in action again and will be introduced to new teams with stories to share in a new series packed with more drama and warmth.”
Some of the ‘stars’ of the last series:
The ‘Two Nats’ – Paramedics Natalie Greaves and Natalie Calow
Controller, Rich Phillips
Paramedic, Darren Neeld
Paramedic, Maya Black
Emergency Medical Technician, Mick Johnson
Controller, Louise Dawson
Really pleased it’s coming back. It was fantastic!
It was a superb episode. Nat was so brave allowing her own torment to be left in the programme. These teams are awesome
Couldn’t AGREE More with another series
I work for the West Midlands Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust &
Couldn’t agree more letting the General Public see how hard
All the the workforce Work SoSoSo Hard & a privilege to work for the service Thank You BBC & All those with in the Service for all your
Excellent & Exceptional work
Can’t wait to see more of the two NATS and all the crew members
If possible can the crew from the BBC do a shift with thee Out Of Hours Team
In Coventry On a Saturday/Sunday night that would make the general
Public see how not to abuse Westmidlands Ambulance Service NHS
Foundation Trust (Out Of Hours Dr’s & Team). either
The programme is fantastic and it is fantastic it is back on television I absolutely love to watch the programme it is interesting and amazing to see the paramedics work and see how calm they are at the difference scene
Really pleased that it’s returning! The public can learn not only some basic first aid hints and tips but also a real understanding what a tough job it can be!
Watched tonight. Very good programme but found some situations very distressing. Due to losing my Son 2 years ago, to a sudden death., has made me very Traumatised.
I am humbled by your care and professionalism. Every MP should do a shift with you and walk a mile in your shoes. Can’t help but believe funding might change. God bless you all.
Do patients have to agree to be filmed for TV in order to receive paramedics’ care? What if they’re unconscious and cannot give consent? I recently had a very painful, scary medical situation that wasn’t pretty. I would be exceedingly upset if West Midlands had come bounding into my home, with cameras attached and filmed my suffering for public entertainment — and to promote themselves, which seems to be the main thing the ambulance service is concerned with. Frankly, it’s shameful.
Hi Ellen…thank you for your comment, but the reality is rather different to that which you portray, and rightly so. There is a twin consent process – permission to film which happens at the point of the crew arriving at the patient’s side and secondly consent to broadcast. This happens some weeks later and has to be written consent. Those that are featured are ALWAYS aware of what they are signing up for and do so willingly. The vast majority of people choose not to which is absolutely fine. You might be surprised how keen some people are for their stories to be told be they those with long term conditions, unusual conditions that they want highlighted nationally, that they would like the story told by way of tribute to their lives one – everyone has their own reasons. To answer your last point, if you don’t want to be filmed, you absolutely don’t need to be; others feel differently which is absolutely their right. To finish, what is perhaps the most important point, having a film crew out will never stand in the way of the care we provide to patients; indeed we ensure there is a clear understanding that if the ambulance staff feel that a camera is in anyway interfering in care they can ask the camera crew to leave. So far it has never happened or been necessary. Hope this helps.
I suppose one other thing to say, all filming is carried out under the OFCOM regulations which are extremely tight. Companies such as the BBC are meticulous about such matters.