Air ambulance thanks fundraisers as it clocks up 50,000 local missions

Paramedics who serve with the DLRAA and WNAA air ambulance services on lifesaving missionsParamedics who serve with the DLRAA and WNAA air ambulance services on lifesaving missions
Paramedics who serve with the DLRAA and WNAA air ambulance services on lifesaving missions
The local air ambulance has thanked fundraisers and those who buy in charity shops for helping it clock up a remarkable 50,000 missions.

Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance (DLRAA) and Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance (WNAA) are funded entirely by public donations, with each mission costing £1,700, and over the last two decades an impressive £85,000 has been raised by donors, fundraisers and retail stores.

The Hanger charity superstore, on Scalford Road, Melton, generated nearly £1million for the charity in its first year of opening last year.

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Emma Peake, acting CEO for the air ambulance service, said: “When we talk about 50,000 missions, it is people and their extended families that have been positively affected by our lifesaving work.

The DLRAA air ambulance en route to a lifesaving missionThe DLRAA air ambulance en route to a lifesaving mission
The DLRAA air ambulance en route to a lifesaving mission

"It has meant people celebrating their own milestone birthdays and anniversaries which might never have happened, it has meant saving the NHS tens of millions of pounds by providing all our services for free, and it has meant many lives saved or extra time given for families to say goodbye.

“All of this is achieved because of the dedication, commitment, and passion of everyone involved at our charity.

"50,000 missions has been supported not only by our incredible supporters, donors, and staff, but through our network of now 37 retail stores which have generated an astounding £42million, 680 reuse clothing banks, and a sensational army of now 795 selfless volunteers.”

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The missions milestone has been reached in a year in which the DLRAA has been operating for 15 years and WNAA for 20.

Some of the local air ambulance paramedicsSome of the local air ambulance paramedics
Some of the local air ambulance paramedics

They both provide pre-hospital emergency critical care - 24 hours a day, 365 days a year - using both helicopters and critical care cars while working alongside East Midlands and West Midlands Ambulance Services.

Missions are often life-saving events, as was the case for former patient, Adrian O’Donnell, who was treated after suffering a cardiac arrest.

“Mine was one of those 50,000 missions and my story highlights the difference between life and death that being treated by the air ambulance crew can make,” he commented.

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“My wife, Jane, and I are forever grateful for this vital service for saving my life and the knock-on effect the charity has when it saves lives; this being on families, friends, and the public – it’s amazing that it’s kept operational by public support and donations.

Based at Coventry Airport and Nottingham Heliport, respectively, WNAA and DLRAA carry dedicated critical care paramedics and doctors who are able to perform advanced medical interventions and surgical procedures - usually performed in a hospital environment - from thoracotomies and caesareans to amputations, when the need is there.

The charity’s frontline crews, who work tirelessly around the clock to help save lives, are proud to have been able to help so many in their moment of need.

Critical care paramedic and DLRAA base manager, Gavin Alexander, said: “Since 2003, the response of the public to us has been fantastic as we have continued to provide frontline critical care across our five counties and further afield as we’ve responded to countless road traffic collisions, medical incidents, assaults, falls, sporting/leisure incidents and industrial accidents."

For more information or to support the vital charity, click HERE or call 0300 3045999.