In Kent, Surrey and Sussex, around 2,500 people call 999 every day. Our own dispatchers screen all of these calls and will send one of our crews to help people who are critically unwell or severely injured.
Our highly skilled pilots then work as fast as possible to get the medical team to the scene. All of our pilots are highly experienced – and they need to be, as they often need to land in challenging places.
Each of our medical teams operate with a doctor who usually specialises in anaesthesia or emergency medicine, and a paramedic accustomed to challenging environments and trained in critical care.
Together, they bring advanced care out of the hospital and directly to the patient – saving precious time and giving them the best possible chance.
For our patients, every second really is precious.
They may need to be placed into an induced coma to prevent further swelling from a brain injury. They may need a complex surgical procedure to enable them to breathe. They may even need an emergency blood transfusion to help replace what they have lost.
Even in a hospital, these procedures can be demanding. Our medical teams provide this treatment in all weathers and environments – including at night and potentially in fields, woods or on remote pathways. They are always ready to respond, whatever the circumstances.
And their work doesn’t end there. After initial treatment at the scene, the priority moves on. Our medical teams will decide which hospital will be able, and available, to provide the best care for the patient’s ongoing needs. Our pilots then need to work fast again to complete this vital hospital transfer.
Every bit of support is truly valued and helps us to be there for each person who needs us.
As you can imagine, keeping a charity like ours running is a costly and complicated business. Flying and maintaining the latest helicopters 24 hours a day, buying vital supplies and equipment, training the very best teams in the air and on the ground (and so much more), adds up to a lot of money.
But we keep flying high thanks to our amazing supporters. Together, we can continue being there whenever, and wherever, we are needed.
It costs over £7million each year to continue our life-saving work. This sounds like a lot of money, and it is, but each penny truly makes a difference.
Here, we break it down to show how your support helps and what it can contribute to.