Nottingham Hospitals Charity’s Saving Lives Helipad Appeal has received a significant boost thanks to another generous donation from the HELP Appeal.
Launched in July 2014, the Saving Lives Helipad Appeal aims to raise £3 million to build an onsite helipad at Nottingham’s Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC), so that critically-injured patients can be transferred to the East Midlands Major Trauma Centre more quickly than current arrangements allow.
The HELP Appeal supports the building and updating of helipads around the country, so that all Major Trauma Centres and key A&E hospitals can have their own helipads in the future. And the £0.25 million donation is the second in a series of pledged donations that they’re planning to make towards the Saving Lives Helipad Appeal.
Currently, patients being taken to QMC by air ambulance have to complete their journey by road, adding precious minutes to their transfer. Having a dedicated, onsite helipad will reduce this transfer time, getting the most seriously-injured patients from across the region directly to the Major Trauma Centre where specialist teams are available, 24/7, to save lives.
Chief Executive of the HELP Appeal, Robert Bertram said: “Knowing the huge difference this life-saving helipad will have for critically ill patients, we are pleased to make our second grant payment of £250,000.
“Using an air ambulance to bypass traffic jams and rise above speed limits is only part of the equation when trying to save a patient’s life. Enabling them to land on a hospital helipad beside the expert care they urgently need within the Golden Hour, could mean the difference between life and death.
“But none of this would be possible without donations from the general public, who have helped us take another significant step closer to building the helipad.”
Lesley Knight knows only too well the importance of having an accessible helipad landing site close to a Major Trauma unit. Her 11 year old son Thomas died following a road traffic accident outside their home in Staffordshire in 2008. Despite a quick transfer to hospital in Birmingham by helicopter they were unable to land on a designated helipad at the hospital. Lesley is supporting the drive to get dedicated helipads at all Major Trauma hospitals, nationally.
Lesley said: “The team of paramedics, nurses and doctors made every effort to try and save my lovely boy. Unfortunately he did not survive; his injuries were far too severe and there was nothing that anyone could have done to save his life. I have learned from experience how important it is that hospitals have a helipad for the air ambulances to land on. An on-site helipad compliments the whole air ambulance service, helping to save lives by saving time.”
Barbara Cathcart, Chief Executive of Nottingham Hospitals Charity said: “We are tremendously grateful to the HELP Appeal for their second generous donation; helping us to get a step closer to our life-saving helipad at Queens Medical Centre. As an Air Ambulance organisation they understand first-hand the need to transfer emergency patients to our highly skilled Major Trauma team as quickly as possible. Major Trauma can happen to anyone, at any time – in an emergency, every second counts. This generous funding boost will make a huge difference to our helipad appeal and help us to save time, to save lives.”
To find out more about Nottingham Hospitals Charity and the Saving Lives Helipad Appeal or to make a donation, please visit www.nottinghamhospitalscharity.org.uk or call 0115 962 7905.
Lesley Knight with son Thomas