Essex air ambulance under threat

AN INCREASE in costs and a downturn in donations is threatening the existence of the Essex Air Ambulance. Due to a significant increase in expenditure over the last 12 months the service now needs in the region of �250,000 per month to cover all charitabl

AN INCREASE in costs and a downturn in donations is threatening the existence of the Essex Air Ambulance.

Due to a significant increase in expenditure over the last 12 months the service now needs in the region of �250,000 per month to cover all charitable costs and aircraft operations.

Blaming the current economic climate, with fundraising contributions declining, finance director of the ambulance trust, Andrew Bounds, said it has become even more difficult for them to reach this essential monthly figure.

He said: "The introduction of doctors onto the Essex emergency medical helicopter has seen a resulting increase in costs.


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"Apart from the doctors' payroll costs we are also required to fund their clinical governance from consultants along with medical supplies and equipment for their day to day needs.

"Although the monthly operational costs and charitable expenditure has increased considerably, I am sure all will agree that the costs are worth the increased care now given and additional lives saved."

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There are many contributing factors to this new monthly figure including increased costs in fuel and operational overheads.

Operations director of the Air Ambulance Trust, Cliff Gale, explains: "We are seeing the number of missions we attend increasing and anticipate this trend will continue during the coming months. Consequently, monthly operating costs have risen so we will continue to work hard to ensure the helicopter is tasked effectively."

Essex Air Ambulance needs help as it relies solely on the generosity and goodwill of the people and businesses of Essex to keep the life-saving helicopter flying.

For more information and ways to support your Air Ambulance visit EssexAirAmbulance.uk.com.

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