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Witnessing tragedy drove ex-Army medical students to start their own business

PUBLISHED: 14:00 14 October 2018 | UPDATED: 14:56 14 October 2018

Norwich university students Harrison Young (left) and William Allen have started their own medical training business, Medical Training Solutions. Picture: University of East Anglia

Norwich university students Harrison Young (left) and William Allen have started their own medical training business, Medical Training Solutions. Picture: University of East Anglia

University of East Anglia

Two university students from Norwich have delivered first aid training for a major car maker after setting up their own business.

Harrison Young, co-founder of Medical Training Solutions, gives a training session. Picture: University of East AngliaHarrison Young, co-founder of Medical Training Solutions, gives a training session. Picture: University of East Anglia

Harrison Young, who recently graduated with a paramedic science diploma from University of East Anglia (UEA), and William Allen, an Army Reserve medic who is studying for an integrated masters in sports and exercise science at the University of Suffolk (UoS), founded Medical Training Solutions in November 2017.

It was just two months before they were approached about delivering training at the Nissan Technical Centre in Cranfield. Following the success of that session the duo are set to train more staff at Nissan Design Europe in central London.

Mr Allen, 23, said: “It has been such an incredible opportunity for us, Nissan are internationally known and their workforce is huge.”

Their business idea was sparked after Mr Young, 24, witnessed poor workplace first aid while on shift with the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST).

He said: “I attended an incident at a supermarket where a man had been suffering from a heart attack, and the staff hadn’t recognised the signs. This unfortunately resulted in him having a cardiac arrest.

“We did everything we could for him when we arrived, but he sadly passed away. I kept going over the incident, asking myself whether better first aid training, would have given the staff the confidence to identify the heart attack and act sooner. This was our chance to make a difference.”

The pair have known each other since the age of 11 and both joined the Army in their teens, serving for around five years each.

They sought help from the UEA student enterprise service to start their business, which offers guidance and funding to students and recent graduates.

Mr Young said: “We’ve both always had a strong business sense, but we’ve been in the Army most of our working lives so we really benefited from the workshops around marketing, networking and social media.”

Medical Training Solutions’ in-house courses are accredited, regulated and delivered by practicing health care professionals who incorporate the latest clinical guidance and research into their teaching.

Mr Young, who was in the Parachute Regiment, and Mr Allen, who used to be in the Royal Military Police, will be donating a proportion of their profits to the UK veteran’s mental health charity, Combat Stress.

They are also keen to take their training abroad and have been supporting the charity Futurestars by donating medical supplies and intend to deliver training in West Africa later this year.

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