Dr Dan Poulter, MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, is confident that the East Anglian Air Ambulance faces a bright future after the vital service was given a major boost after a re-examination of the NHS Major Trauma system review for the Eastern region.
Earlier this year, concerns were voiced about the future of the Air Ambulance in light of the East of England major trauma system review, which initially proposed imposing air ambulance boundaries dictated by a road transport time of 45 minutes from the new major trauma centre based at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge. Beyond this, patients would be taken to a district general hospital, to await subsequent transfer to the major trauma centre at Addenbrooke’s Hospital.
Dr Poulter took action by initiating contact with the Secretary of State for Health the Rt Hon Andrew Lansley MP. In a letter which was signed by the majority of other East Anglian MP’s he expressed concern about the proposals and the negative impact they would have on the air ambulance service. As a result, NHS bosses have now granted concessions to the East Anglian Air Ambulance to ensure it can continue to fly critically injured patients direct to the Major Trauma Centre at Addenbrooke’s Hospital outside of the 45 minute journey time.
A new temporary helipad is now likely to be established at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, which will mean that the East Anglian Air Ambulance can continue to participate and support in the rapid treatment of severe trauma patients.