We’re Raising Awareness of Burns Prevention During Child Safety Week 2021

We have made a video to share the story of Family Oops and Burns First Aid as part of Child Safety Week 2021.

Written by Nurse Specialist, Kristina Stiles, and published by the Children’s Burns Trust, the book follows the Family Oops who at the beginning are “quite careless with hot things when there was no excuse” but who come to learn about minimising risks at home and also the key first aid steps to take in the event of a child or family member suffering a burn.

Kristina, who is a Burns and Plastic Surgery Clinical Nurse Specialist currently working at King’s College Hospital, invited us to make this recording knowing the critical role of the Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) in rapidly responding to patients suffering the most severe burns. Last year alone, we attended more than 30 incidents involving patients suffering from serious, life-threatening burns.

Dr Matthew Vale, HEMS Doctor with KSS says: “We are dispatched to the most critically ill and injured patients to deliver specialist emergency care at the scene. A number of our patients suffer severe and complex burns, for example to the face, chest or airway as a result of house fires, scalds in the home, road traffic accidents and less commonly electrocution and chemical incidents. We bring specialist interventions, such as the ability to deliver an emergency anaesthetic, which can be life-saving for burns patients.”

“Rapidly getting pre-hospital emergency care to these patients is critical, before transporting them to a Major Trauma Centre or regional specialist burns centre to continue their care.”

Dr Vale continues: “But before we or other emergency services arrive and if it is safe to do so, there are steps we can all take to help improve outcomes for burns patients, and the story of Family Oops and Burns First Air presents these in a clear and memorable way. We were delighted to be invited by Kristina Stiles to make this recording which highlights the importance of prevention and early intervention for burns.”

Kristina Stiles says: “KSS HEMS clinicians attend our most significantly injured patients, delivering advanced care outside of the hospital environment with an aim to preserve life.”

“The first few hours from the time of burn injury form a defining moment in a burn survivor’s path to recovery, which if missed – is irreversible. Only 39% of adults and 48% of children with a burn injury receive appropriate first aid before reaching the specialist burn service, which can deepen the burn, require a skin graft operation, and heal with a scar. With rapid response capacity, HEMS teams have an ability to not only save a life, but to give our patients an opportunity to achieve quality of life, long after their injuries have healed – to turn surviving into thriving.”

“This year’s Child Safety Week theme is “Share because you care” and I am grateful to the wonderful team at KSS for helping me share the story of The Family Oops and Burns First Aid with children and families across Kent, Surrey and Sussex and beyond, in the hope that the book will inform, educate and inspire our next generations of burn first aiders.”

The video, which features KSS Paramedic Ben Macauley reading the story, will be shared on our social media channels on Tuesday 8th June as part of Child Safety Week (7th – 13th June), an annual campaign organised by the Child Accident Prevention Trust to raise awareness of the risks of child accidents and how they can be prevented.

The Trust is working in partnership with the Children’s Burns Trust to raise awareness of the number of children who are seriously burned and scalded each year, and to provide information on home safety and key first aid to administer following a burn.


Saving lives when every second counts

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