Buxton paramedic to receive Queen's Ambulance Service Medal in the New Year's Honours List
One of East Midlands Ambulance Service’s (EMAS) first paramedics has been named in the New Year’s Honours List to receive the prestigious Queen’s Ambulance Service Medal for Distinguished Service.
Thomas Bailey, 64, based at Buxton Ambulance Station in Derbyshire, has worked on the frontline of the ambulance service for 40 years.
Thomas was nominated for his four decades of dedication to caring for emergency patients, for setting up a rural cave rescue service in Derbyshire to rescue patients involved in dangerous incidents, and he recently fought and defeated cancer.
The medal, which will be presented at Buckingham Palace in London, recognises ambulance personnel who have shown exceptional devotion to duty, outstanding ability, merit and conduct in their role.
Thomas explained that it was a complete surprise when he received the letter informing him that he is to be awarded the Queen’s Ambulance Medal – although for the last few years he has joked about being missed off the list.
He said: “When I first opened the letter, I didn’t think it was real. I was so surprised, although I have been saying for years that I would have to write to the Queen because she kept missing me off the list.
“I really am honoured, literally. I’m very proud, not just for me, but for the ambulance service and all my colleagues who turn up to difficult situations day in, day out, to help someone.”
Thomas joined Derbyshire Ambulance Service, before it became EMAS, in September 1979, originally based at New Mills, and was one of the first in the service to undertake paramedic training.
Thomas said: “There is not much better than going out to help people. To be able to walk into someone’s crisis and help them so that there is a positive outcome, is a real privilege.
“My career has been successful because of the people I have met along the way who have encouraged me and supported me, and I have been very lucky to have had one good crewmate after another.”
EMAS Chief Executive, Richard Henderson, said: “His dedication to EMAS over the last 40 years is truly inspiring, and he has been a fantastic mentor to many ambulance colleagues.”