Demand for air ambulance soars in Milton Keynes

The Thames Valley Air Ambulance has been called out to almost four patients a week from Milton Keynes alone over the past year.

This is an increase of 100 per cent from the previous year, the charity has revealed today.

The air ambulance and two of the crew's emergency vehicles

The air ambulance and two of the crew's emergency vehicles

The most common types of incidents the crew attended were cardiac arrests (23 per cent), road traffic collisions (22 per cent) and accidental injury (19 per cent).

But the extra workload was only possible thanks to the charity choosing to become an independent health care provider, allowing the service to significantly expand its emergency medical service.

A spokesman said: "This was an incredibly important development for the charity as it allowed it to increase its resources to be able to respond to more patients, giving them the best possible chance of survival and recovery through getting the right vital treatment."

The air ambulance helicopter carries pain relief specialist drugs that are not available on traditional land ambulances.

They allow the charity’s teams of paramedics and doctors to deliver advanced medical care to critically ill and severely injured patients.

"Within minutes, the highly trained crew can perform hospital-level procedures at the scene of the incident, from blood transfusions to open-chest surgery to cardiac arrests," said the spokesman.Over the past year, the service had recruited 11 more paramedics and added four Critical Care Response vehicles to its emergency fleet.

Supporters will get to see these developments showcased for the first time in the third series of More4’s Emergency Helicopter Medics at 9pm on Sunday evenings.

The television programme highlights Thames Valley Air Ambulance’s vital work, and two other air ambulance services, as they bring hospital-level treatment to patients suffering from a range of potentially life-threatening illnesses and injuries.

Thames Valley Air Ambulance’s Chief Executive Amanda McLean said: "I’m incredibly proud of the fact that we have cared for so many more patients and I’m very grateful to our crew and staff who have worked so hard to make this possible."Patients are at the heart of everything we do, and we are continually striving to improve the care we provide... We receive no government or national lottery funding and I’d like to thank the community that we serve for their generosity and support."