17 Mar 2022

Lynsey Grant, paramedic with London's Air Ambulance

British Science Week is a 10-day celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths, taking place between 11-20 March 2022. To mark this week, we spoke to London’s Air Ambulance’s Lead Flight Paramedic, Lynsey Grant, to hear why science is a key element to our society.

Lynsey also shares her path to becoming a paramedic; offering advice to others who may be planning a similar career.

How and when did you decide to become a paramedic? Was it something you always considered?

It wasn’t at all. I had always wanted to be a lorry driver from a young age, which wasn’t particularly encouraged at school. After doing that for a few years, I decided I needed a new challenge and attempted to get a job in forensics with the police. Unfortunately I didn’t have the necessary qualifications, so I enrolled in a further education course in human biology. During the course I realised I had a new found fascination with the human body and decided to pursue a career in medicine. Being impatient, I felt it was going to take too long to study to become a doctor or a nurse so I made the decision to join the ambulance service, which at the time, was going to take 16 weeks to become an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)

What was your career path to becoming a paramedic? 

After being accepted by the London Ambulance Service I carried out a 16 week training course followed by four weeks of operational training. After a couple of years as an EMT, I carried out a six week residential training course to become a paramedic, followed by a four week hospital placement. The path to becoming a paramedic is a little different nowadays and can take longer – so I’m really thankful for the journey I got to take.

Science is fascinating, whichever branch you choose. We need more scientists, especially when it comes to finding cures for diseases or improving healthcare in general.

What is the most rewarding thing about being a paramedic for London’s Air Ambulance? 

For me (and probably most of us) it’s about being able to help some of London’s most critically injured patients and being able to get to their side as quickly as possible, sometimes meaning the difference between life and death.

What are the biggest challenges you have to face in your job?

Personally it’s the emotional side of it. Having to tell a patient’s family member or friend that their loved one is critically injured, or worse, is heart-breaking and it never gets any easier.

Science week is about celebrating science, technology, engineering and maths. What advice would you give to anybody considering a career in science?

Do it! Science is fascinating, whichever branch you choose. We need more scientists, especially when it comes to finding cures for diseases or improving healthcare in general.

If you weren’t a paramedic, would you still be a HGV truck driver?

No. As much as I enjoyed it and am glad I achieved something I’d always set out to do, I needed a new challenge and I’m so glad I chose paramedicine. It lead to me to working with London’s Air Ambulance which is a huge privilege and I get to be part of an amazing team of people.


Dr Chloe BakerSpeaking with Dr Chloe Baker

Earlier this month, for International Woman’s Day 2022, we spoke to Dr Chloe Baker, one of London’s Air Ambulance registrars. Like Lynsey, Chloe attends to London’s most critically injured patients on a daily basis; taking the hospital to the roadside when a life is on the line. 

Not only is Chloe one of London’s Air Ambulance’s advanced trauma team, but also a former patient of the service, having had her life saved aged 21.  

Read our conversation with Chloe.

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