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Jim Fitzpartick
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London Air Ambulance

12 Sep

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National Air Ambulance Week celebrates 30 years of emergency air ambulances in the UK

September 12, 2017 | By | No Comments

This week Air Ambulance charities across the UK are once again coming together to celebrate National Air Ambulance Week (NAAW) in this the 30th year of helicopter emergency air ambulances (HEMS) in the UK.

Thirty years ago, the first air ambulance service was formed in Cornwall. More recently, Northern Ireland; the only area within the UK without such a service, became operational.
Since then, these critical life-saving services have invested funds to expand their operations, increased their operating hours to operate at night, upgraded to larger aircrafts, increased their medical capabilities with the carriage of blood products and invested in the advanced education and training of their paramedics and doctors.

The charities together raised £162 million in 2016, operated 39 helicopters and fly on average 20,500 missions each year. Collectively, they have a volunteer network of over 2,500 people and are one of the most exciting and innovative group of organisations in the UK.

During NAAW, many of the local charities organise events and initiatives in a bid to generate funds and raise awareness. Members of the public show their support by a variety of means and businesses look for ways of getting involved. It’s the perfect time to show your support.

One idea, which is set to ‘take off’ in support of the UK’s air ambulance charities, is a social media campaign called ‘Pie in the Sky’. The initiative is rapidly gaining pace and involves members of the public posting a video to Facebook, Twitter or YouTube of themselves taking a ‘pie in the face’, pledging a donation and nominating three others to do the same. A TextGiving code has been set up in support of the campaign: PIES21 £2 to 70070

Jim Fitzpatrick, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Air Ambulances (APPGAA) and MP for Poplar and Limehouse said:

“Air ambulances play an essential role in our emergency services response and the advanced care which has recently plaid a part in a 20% increase in mortality should be commended. The number of incidents where the skills of the crews are needed is increasing, and the types of care needed are becoming more complex as our population ages and we stay more active in to later life.

“The APPGAA are champions and advocates of these life-saving services within Parliament and therefore as Chair I am delighted to help promote National Air Ambulance Week in 2017 with all of my colleagues.”

To find out what your local air ambulance is doing in support of National Air Ambulance Week, contact your local charity or visit their website and social media channels.
For more information on the Association of Air Ambulances and its members, visit: www.aoaa.org.uk

05 Dec

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Bank fines celebrated by Minister at Air Ambulance Reception

December 5, 2016 | By | No Comments

A reception held by the All Party Parliamentary Group for Air Ambulances (APPGAA) took place on the House of Commons Terrace. The event, hosted by Chairman of the APPGAA Jim Fitzpatrick MP for Poplar and Limehouse, gave members of both Houses of Parliament the opportunity to meet with representatives from air ambulance charities and ambulance services.

Jim introduced Rob Wilson MP, Minister for Social Society who thanked the APPGAA for all their hard work before addressing the audience. Rob highlighted the excellent outcome of the Autumn Statement last week where air ambulances were a major beneficiary in being awarded £10.8 million from the banking fines fund (LIBOR).

Rob Wilson MP said:

“Air ambulances across the UK have grown to play a key role in our emergency services response capacity. The latest award of £10.8 million is in addition to the £24 million previously allocated in previous statements, however there is a possibility that these funds will run out in the not too distant future.

“The air ambulance network needs to consider not only how to continue saving lives but also ways to enhance the network so that they can continue saving lives into the future. It is making great use of their 2,500 volunteer community in many different ways. The UK is the second most generous nation in the world donating £11 billion to good causes. My goal is to create an environment so that the voluntary sector can create a sustainable future. The public must trust that their fundraising is going to great causes and you have my continued support as the Minister of Social Society.

Hannah Sebright, Chair of the Association of Air Ambulances (AAA) responded and said:

“I would like to thank the Minister and Central Government for their continued support. The recognition that Central Government affords us in giving greater visibility and raising our profile, is a goal that we are all working towards because it’s essential that we remain in the public domain.

“We are however, aware of the financial constraints on the NHS and our Ambulance Service colleagues. This is why it is a priority that through the AAA we work continue to work together in our communities and support our NHS Trusts by continually improving our services.”

Hanna explained that the AAA has ambitious plans for 2017 and highlighted a number of key projects including input on the Ambulance Radio Programme which will impact all AAA members, as well as other emergency service providers. She also said that the AAA recognises that with the extension of flight time limitations, it had the potential to impact on the number of paramedics needed as technical crew members and pressed the need to develop a cohesive national lit helipad network.

Finally, Hanna concluded in saying:

“The APPGAA’s annual reception is an important date in the calendar and an opportunity for the community to come together and meet with members of Westminster to highlight our successes and discuss our Key Issues. On behalf of the AAA, I would like to thank everyone for being here today, it’s a testament to how passionate we feel about providing the best possible service we can, to the patients we attend to.”

Jim Fitzpatrick MP brought proceedings to a conclusion with a final message of thanks:

“The APPGAA are here as your champions and your advocates in Parliament. Keep providing the amazing service that you do for our constituents; without you, many of them would not be around.”

The Association of Air Ambulances (AAA), which represents the majority of air ambulance charities, ambulance services and the supply chain throughout the UK, supported the reception for the fourth year, bringing patients, charities, ambulance services and legislators together.

More information on the APPGAA, Association of Air Ambulances and the air ambulance community can be found by visiting: www.aoaa.org.uk

02 Nov

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Jim Fitzpatrick joined politicians from across London to pledge support for London’s Air Ambulance

November 2, 2016 | By | No Comments

MPs, Peers and GLA members gathered in Parliament on Tuesday to congratulate the charity on winning the Pride of Britain Emergency Services award.

Advanced trauma doctors and paramedics also attended and set up medical demonstrations so guests could try out life-saving medical treatment on realistic dummies.

Politicians were also able to meet the helicopter pilots, fire crew and former patients at the event, hosted by London MPs Rushanara Ali (Labour) and Boris Johnson (Conservative) – key supporters of the charity.

Welcoming guests to the event Rushanara Ali said:

“It’s wonderful to celebrate the tireless work London’s Air Ambulance does to support people across our city.”

Rushanara explained to the guests that London’s Air Ambulance had been named winner at this year’s Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Awards, which were broadcast on ITV on Tuesday night. The charity was recognised for its use of a ground-breaking procedure on patient Vicky– known as REBOA (Resuscitative Endovascular Balloon Occlusion of the Aorta) – to prevent patients from bleeding to death after major trauma. She introduced a video showing the procedure being performed on Vicky, her constituent, who also attended the reception.

Dr Anne Weaver, Emeritus Doctor with London’s Air Ambulance then spoke to the room of over 100 guests to explain why the charity plays such a crucial role, and what politicians can do to support:

“Trauma is the biggest killer in under 45s, even in children. So we deliver the hospital to the roadside, to our patients, when they need it most. We work alongside our NHS partners, Barts Health Trust and the London Ambulance Service to improve the outcome for so many people whose deaths are preventable.

“London’s Air Ambulance is there for the 10 million people who live and work in London. As influencers in your constituencies please do what you can to help us serve London and spread the message we are a charity.”

Speaking about the House of Commons event, CEO of London’s Air Ambulance, Charles Newitt said:

“This was our most successful Parliamentary Reception with a high turnout of politicians from across London and across the political parties. It was a pleasure to be able to meet with them, explain more about our charity, and receive their pledges of support.”

Since the charity started in 1989, it has treated more than 35,000 patients. Some of those former patients met their local MP at the event to share their stories. All London MPs and Assembly members were invited to the reception, as well as any politicians with an interest in health or charities.

For more information on the charity and the incredibly vital work they do, visit: https://londonsairambulance.co.uk/ 

28 Sep

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Jim Fitzpatrick MP shows support for National Air Ambulance Week

September 28, 2016 | By | No Comments

NAAW ran from 19th to 25th September- an initiative created by the Association of Air Ambulances (AAA) and celebrates the work of local air ambulance charities, giving them a national voice and an opportunity to promote the work they do at a local level. Together, the UK’s air ambulance charities raise £120 million a year, operate 37 helicopters, have a volunteer network of over 2,500 people and are one of the most exciting and innovative group of organisations in the UK.

London’s Air Ambulance treats on average five critically injured people in London each day, performing medical interventions at the roadside which are normally only found in a hospital emergency department. Barts Health NHS Trust provide the doctors and some financial support and the London Ambulance Service provides the paramedics and the emergency infrastructure to dispatch the service. The charity relies heavily on voluntary donations and has a world class reputation for delivering clinical innovation and excellence at the roadside. Since its inception 28 years ago, London’s Air Ambulance has treated over 35,000 patients.

The MP for Poplar & Limehouse said:

“I am proud to support London’s Air Ambulance. They provide a unique service to London by bringing the hospital to the patient.  In the first 6 months of the year alone 39 people in Tower Hamlets have already been treated by London’s Air Ambulance.”

Charles Newitt, Interim CEO of London’s Air Ambulance, said:

“National Air Ambulance Week is the ideal time to release our new infographic with data from the first 6 months of this year. It serves to highlight the work that we do, all across London, all day, and all year. We want everyone in London to know that we are there for them, should they need our help and that as a charity we can’t operate without the donations of those that live and work in London.

“National Air Ambulance Week is a week when air ambulance charities across the UK rally together to raise awareness and funds in their local communities. I am urging people to get involved during National Air Ambulance Week in any way you can to support us. Your support is vital in saving lives.”

06 Mar

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London Air Ambulance

March 6, 2015 | By | No Comments

London’s Air Ambulance reveals its busiest postcodes in London

Support Your Helicopter in Your Borough

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London’s Air Ambulance, the charity that delivers an advanced trauma team to critically injured people in London, treated 1806 patients in 2014. The charity has today released its mission statistics for 2014 in a bid to raise awareness and reach out for vital funding towards a second helicopter and to extend its daylight flying hours.

Key statistics include:

  • 104 patients were treated in Tower Hamlets
  • Busiest boroughs included Westminster (120 patients treated), Tower Hamlets (104 patients treated) and Hackney (101 patients treated)
  • Busiest postcodes included N1 (41 patients treated ), E14, NW10 and SE1 (33 patients treated)
  • Of the 1806 patients treated, the mechanisms of injury were:
    • 33% road traffic collisions
    • 27% Falls
    • 24% stabbings and shootings
    • 16% Other (including incidents on the rail networks, hangings and drownings)

Jim Fitzpatrick MP said: “These stats show how important the Air Ambulance is to Tower Hamlets as well as the rest of London. I hope the public responds positively and generously to the appeal. The need for a second helicopter is very clear.”

Graham Hodgkin, CEO of London’s Air Ambulance, said: “While our statistics show that we were busier in some areas of London than others, trauma can happen to anyone, anywhere at any time.  Trauma doesn’t have a postcode and neither do we.  By releasing these statistics today we are hoping to raise awareness of that fact and that the charity is here to serve everyone in London.

We are currently raising money for a vital second helicopter and to extend our daylight flying hours through the Your London, Your Helicopter campaign and we need people to get behind this biggest fundraising drive to date.  In Tower Hamlets there is a population of 245,000.  If all those people were able to donate just £5 we would be £1,225,500 closer to getting the second helicopter in the air. Please Text HELICOPTER to 70800 to donate £5 now or visit yourhelicopter.london.”

London’s Air Ambulance is calling on the people and organisations of London to join together in owning the solution to London’s vital need for a second emergency medical helicopter.  In its largest ever fundraising drive, the ‘Your London, Your Helicopter’ campaign is hoping to raise the remaining £4.4 million needed to acquire and sustain a second helicopter and extend its daylight flying hours for five years.  The charity is urging the 10 million people who live, work and holiday in the capital to donate, whether £5 or £500 at yourhelicopter.london  or Text HELICOPTER to 70800 to donate £5 now.

London’s Air Ambulance delivers an advanced trauma team to critically injured people in London 24/7, using a helicopter by day and rapid response cars at night or in adverse weather conditions.  In 2014 the London’s Air Ambulance helicopter was offline for maintenance for 55 days in total.  Through the acquisition of a second helicopter and by extending our daylight flying hours in the summer months, we will be able to reach an estimated 400 more patients per year by aircraft.  By having a helicopter available at all times, it will also give London greater resilience during major incidents.

The total cost of acquiring and sustaining a second helicopter, and extending daylight flying hours over five years is £6 million. Last year the charity was awarded £1million from the LIBOR fund by Chancellor George Osborne and a further £600,000 has been raised from companies, charitable trusts and individual donors.  The ‘Your London, Your Helicopter’ campaign hopes to raise the remaining £4.4 million from the people and organisations of London by July this year.  The charity hopes to be in a position to have a second helicopter operational by summer 2015.

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Jim Fitzpatrick MP