The NHS estimates that the average cost of care for a victim requiring specialist burns treatment, eye care, rehabilitation and mental health treatment is £34,500.
NHS England, in partnership with the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) is today publishing new advice for anyone falling victim to acid attacks, including new online guidance and support to victims as well as friends or family of people affected by burns.
Acid Attack Sussex First Aid Training
The NHS and leading burns surgeons guidance to help ensure victims of acid attacks
In 2014, 16 people required specialist medical advice, rising to 25 in 2015 and increasing further to 32 last year.
So-called ‘acid attacks’, where corrosive substances are used as part of a violent assault or robbery, have become increasingly prominent, with a series of high-profile incidents this year.
The guidance – Report, Remove, Rinse – has been developed with specialist BAPRAS burns and trauma surgeons, who have treated victims of these attacks.
Whilst the overall number of people impacted by this type of attack remains low, people are advised to take three simple steps in the event they witness or are victim of an attack:
In 2016 the St Andrew’s Burns Centre saw 20 people who required admission because of the most serious effects of acid or corrosive burns, a similar number who were treated there over the previous 15 years. The Centre is on course to deliver help to over 30 people in 2017.
People assaulted with corrosive substances like acid are likely to need a range of different care after the emergency response. This could include therapy, specialist burns treatment, and in some instances eye or plastic and reconstructive surgery.
“So-called acid attacks are medical emergencies and people should immediately dial 999.
Whilst making this advice available to the public, NHS England have also partnered with a number of organizations, including police forces, ambulance services and the Royal College of Surgeons to ensure this advice is shared with front-line public service people who are often first on the scene.
Report the attack: dial 999.
Remove contaminated clothing carefully.
Rinse skin immediately in running water.