top of page
160302 Exercise unified response

Exercise Unified Response: a live multi-agency exercise at St Thomas' Hospital, London

Major benefits from rehearsing your incident response

​Are your teams ready to respond? Can you quickly stabilise an incident, establish the facts and business impacts, warn your staff, invoke continuity plans and issue approved communications, including to regulators all within a few hours?


Benefits of running an Exercise with Incident Ready Consulting



  •   That your Incident Management Team has rehearsed response in a safe environment

  •   That your plans have been stress tested with no risk to the business

  •   That your response plans are effective and fit for purpose



  •    Engaging scenarios deepen learning and help retain important lessons

  •    Expand your understanding of how to work with emergency services

  •    Identify gaps in how plans join up (across departments and with key suppliers)


We follow a structured approach to build the exercise with you

   1.    Fact finding – understanding your business priorities, resources and contingencies

   2.    Scenario planning with you to build a realistic and stretching exercise based on your risks and incident response experience

   3.    Exercise delivery – Facilitation to keep the pace and discussion on track

   4.    Management report - detailed analysis and improvement recommendations


I have hundreds of hours of experience of delivering a wide range of exercises from desktop to full live simulations with media involvement. Let me know how I can help tailor and deliver an exercise for your incident management teams. Start planning to rehearse response to the risks you are most worried about now.


Please get in touch to discuss how your incident exercising needs can be best met.  07812 024 003

Exercises 2


Exercise Unified Response was a three day multi-national and multi-agency search and rescue exercise. The scenario was based on a simulated building collapse at Waterloo station with rescue of casualties from the crushed underground station and platforms below.


St Thomas’s received major trauma “casualties” on day 2 into our Accident and Emergency Department which was receiving patients as usual throughout the day. Significant controls were needed with clinical facilitators and Umpires in place to control play which was directed from the hospital control room.


All levels of incident command were involved from Gold Commanders responding to demands from COBR for information through to clinical leads ensuring the continuity of care given against detailed patient histories. A range of simulated  business continuity disruptions from lift failure to operating theatres, loss of water and disruption to blood supplies were also brought in to add challenge.  

EUR Final report

The exercise allowed us to stress test our newly implemented mass notification tool and put our spokespeople and communications team through their paces too.


The exercise was built in just six months by my colleague Jess Child and I working with leads across the Trust and multi-agency partners.

The learning was captured into a detailed Post Exercise Report and improvement action.

Here is the link to a short video clip (25 seconds) where, as Exercise Director, I was explaining the aim of the exercise.


Involving social media feeds and live interviews to camera is an excellent way of stress-testing crisis communication capabilities for safe reflective learning.

Please view the photo page to give a feel of the scale and complexity of this major exercise in one of London's leading teaching hospitals.

Justin Cuckow, ISO 22301 expert, giving a live media interview about a stress testing live exercise

Media interviews

Exercise Unified Response, St Thomas' Hospital, London

“I have worked with Justin to deliver bespoke Business Continuity teaching. We developed a one day course for Emergency Medicine clinicians and managers as part of the Advanced Disaster Response course run at the Academy of Medical Colleges in Hong Kong.”


“While at St Thomas’ Justin was central to designing and running a successful live major incident exercise in A&E (Exercise 'Unified Response') to test response and business continuity along the critical care pathway, delivering valuable learning opportunities for the clinicians and assurance to the Trust that we were prepared to manage a major incident.“

Katherine Henderson, President at The Royal College of Emergency Medicine

bottom of page