Lessons to be learnt

The events that occurred in London on 7 July 2005 have, as did the twin towers disaster in New York in 2001, changed our lives in the UK and other parts of the world. The event was a tragedy for many people, 56 people lost their lives with a number of others seriously injured and maimed (The Stationery Office, 2006). The bombings on that day in July were an act of indiscriminate terror and have had a significant impact on a wide spectrum of our society and further afield. The first on the scene in response to that emergency were the London paramedics.Too often in the past, tragedies have been witnessed which could have been avoided had the lessons of previous experiences been properly learned. The Secretary of State has statutory powers to set up external inquiries. In 2000, the Department of Health published a report of an expert group on learning from adverse events in the NHS-An Organisation with a Memory. The emphasis of the report was on learning lessons from events that caused harm in the health service. It is the function of a government to protect its public and this includes those who provide emergency services.

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