Air ambulance making big difference since start of 24/7 service
- Credit: East Anglian Air Ambulance
The East Anglian Air Ambulance service (EAAA) have helped hundreds of people since the start of its 24/7 operations three months ago.
The 24/7 service was launched on June 30, and they have since responded to 307 incidents between 7pm and 7am, averaging three missions a night.
In this period from June to now, 87 of the taskings were by helicopter and 220 by rapid response vehicle.
The region's air ambulance service were the first in the country to adopt the all-hours air and road response.
It has since been able to cover a much larger area of East Anglia by night, attending a mixture of emergencies including accidental injuries, cardiac arrests, road traffic collisions, medical emergencies, self-harm incidents and assaults.
Matthew Jones, CEO of EAAA, said: “We’re just over three months into providing a fully 24/7 service for the region and we’re really pleased to see that our teams are already making a big difference to people all over East Anglia and beyond.
"We can see that we are being tasked over a much wider area at night than ever before, showing that we’re taking our enhanced critical care skills to those patients most in need of our help.
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“Moving towards providing a 24/7 service has taken us the best part of four years and included raising an extra million pounds a year to fund this change, extending to 24/7 operations by rapid response vehicle first and expanding and renovating the charity’s HQ in Norwich, to adequately house a 24/7 service by air and by road.
"We are incredibly pleased to now be able to offer the same level of service, no matter what the time of day or night, to our patients and their families and this is only possible thanks to our incredible supporters.”
In order to facilitate the additional night-time flying at Norwich Airport, £60,000 was spent on upgrades for the control system and runway lights. These upgrades allow pilots to manually turn on lights, helping to reduce light pollution and save energy.
Each year, the EAAA need to raise £15 million to provide its life-saving services. The 24/7 operational hours would not be possible without these essential donations.