This Christmas, the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity will be working every day throughout the holiday season to provide life-saving treatment where it’s needed the most.
The festive season is traditionally a time to enjoy celebrating with loved ones, friends and family, yet it’s a sad fact that many people across the region will be involved in medical incidents or traumatic events that will leave them fighting for their lives.
When Michelle Child took a fall from her horse, she suffered a brain injury and was in need of emergency care fast.
GWAAC’s Critical Care Team provided the urgent care she needed to stabilise her, including administering a general anaesthetic, before transferring her to Southmead Hospital, the nearest major trauma centre.
Michelle’s mum Sarah said: “If you hadn’t been there to help us it could have been very, very different. Her heart rate was all over the place and she wasn’t breathing properly.
“It just doesn’t bear thinking about, it’s made a massive difference to our lives.”
The charity’s Critical Care Team are on call 365 days a year, bringing the skills and expertise of an in-hospital emergency department straight to the scene of the most critically ill or injured patients.
From giving roadside blood transfusions to treating cardiac arrests or putting a patient under general anaesthetic, each mission they carry out is time-critical and potentially life-saving.
They attend over 5 incidents a day on average, with the team being tasked to over 1,600 incidents from January to October this year so far, meaning they are on track for the busiest year to date.
Critical Care Doctor Matt Campbell said: “Whilst we hope you or your loved ones will never need our services, we want to make sure we are here for you if you do.
“We’ll be working this Christmas to make sure we can keep more families together for many more Christmases to come.’’
Each incident the team are called to costs an average of £1,750, and many people don’t realise that the service relies on charitable donations to keep it flying, needing to raise over £3 million ever year to continue providing their life-saving service.
If you would like to help fund a Christmas Mission this festive season, visit: www.justgiving.com/campaign/christmasmission.