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BBC features The Royal London Hospital's major trauma centre

There were almost 15,000 knife crimes recorded in London last year - the highest since records began. BBC presenter Clive Myrie spent several weeks at The Royal London Hospital's major trauma centre, where many of the victims are treated.

Over a three-month period the BBC followed paramedics, doctors and nurses at The Royal London as they cared for a steady flow of of knife attack victims.

Martin Griffiths is the lead trauma surgeon at The Royal London Hospital - one of the busiest trauma centres in Europe, and is dealing with the impact of high levels of knife crime firsthand. He has spent the past decade visiting schools to lecture on the dangers of carrying weapons as well as saving lives on the operating table. 

"Why not try to talk to these young kids while they're here, away from the street, and find out why they ended up in bad company in the first place?" he says.

"Once you find that out, you can tackle the issue and prevent that young person coming back to my operating theatre, or ending up in a morgue. A knife crime victim isn't just a problem we can fix, but a person we can help."

Martin has been named the NHS's first clinical director for violence reduction, tasked with helping to reduce London's epidemic of stabbings and shootings.

On a local level, at The Royal London he has combined surgical and pastoral care, welcoming three case workers from St Giles Trust, a charity which helps victims of violent crime adjust to changed lives. St Giles talk to the patients, then when they're discharged, help them find jobs, or get back into education or training.

Identifying the wider problems in the lives of knife crime victims, and addressing those issues, has brought results. Re-admittance rates to the Royal London are down from 45% to just 1% in six years.

Read Clive Myrie's full article on the BBC website or watch coverage across the BBC below:

BBC News: Knife crime: On the wards with a London surgeon

BBC News: Knife crime: Trauma of a teenage stabbing survivor

BBC News: 'Our kids are feared': Knife crime's impact on one London borough

BBC Breakfast (from 40 mins)

The Victoria Derbyshire show

The work of Martin Griffiths and St Giles Trust will be featured across the BBC throughout the week of 7-13 October.


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