Our Christ Church speaker for September was Professor Ian Gibson, who gave us a fascinating presentation on the North West Air Ambulance Charity. For a full 365 days of the year this service is available for patients in emergency situations, their 48 strong crew of para medics and doctors deliver specialist and enhanced pre-hospital care to the most critically ill and injured. Many members in the audience had tales of how this amazing service had saved lives of people they knew. From accidental injuries to severe medical emergencies the team provides on the spot medical interventions of the same standard that would be available in a hospital A&E.
We were shown all the complex medical equipment they had on board including a Lucas chest compression kit, which gives automated chest compressions vital for CPR at an eye watering cost of £13K
The charity has existed since 1999. It was established with a single aircraft based at Blackpool Airport and has since upgraded to three Eurocopter EC135, one based at Blackpool Airport and the other two at Manchester Barton Aerodrome. They can be anywhere within the M25 in under 12 minutes.
This essential lifesaving service relies entirely on public donations with no government or NHS funding and it takes £12 million a year to keep this marvellous service going.