Aintree hospital helipad sees 114 landings in first year

A £1m helipad at Aintree University Hospital has seen 114 landings in its first year.

The helipad, which was funded by the HELP Appeal and received its first patients on 3rd July 2017, means it now takes a matter of seconds to transfer some of the region’s most seriously ill patients to the hospital’s Major Trauma Centre, which is located adjacent to the helipad.

Aintree is home to the Cheshire and Merseyside Major Trauma Centre, which provides major trauma services to a catchment area of 2.3 million residents in the North West. This is the first collaborative single site major trauma centre in the country, with Aintree clinical teams working with our neuro specialists from the Walton Centre to give patients seamless care.

These patients are transported by the North West Air Ambulance service and the most common arrivals are people who have been involved in road traffic accidents.

Previously, patients arriving by air ambulance had to be collected from a nearby playing field before being transported to the hospital by road ambulance, a process which could take up to 30 minutes.

Mr Simon Scott, Clinical Director for Major Trauma at Aintree, said:

“The helipad has made a huge difference to our trauma patients. These are people who are seriously injured and every second counts. Being able to minimise the transfer time to hospital means we can get to work treating them more quickly and, as a result, get better outcomes for patients.”

One of the helipad’s most famous visitors is The Duke of Cambridge, who officially opened Aintree’s £35m Urgent Care and Trauma Centre last September and requested a trip on to the helipad so he could meet members of the North West Air Ambulance crew.

Robert Bertram, Chief Executive of the HELP Appeal added: “One year on and we are delighted that the helipad is having such a positive impact – that’s why the HELP Appeal covered the entire cost as we knew the difference it would make to patients who are critically ill. Its proximity to the Emergency Department has given patients quicker access to the expert care they’ve urgently needed over the past 12 months. It’s been and will continue to be a lifesaver.”

Heather Arrowsmith, CEO at the North West Air Ambulance Charity, said: “Every second counts in matters of life-threatening injuries. Helipads like this one allow our crew to significantly reduce patient transfer times and, alongside our partners at Aintree University Hospital, ultimately save more lives across the North West. This one year anniversary shows what an extremely beneficial addition to the emergency service network it has been, and the impact it has had on patients by treating them more quickly.”

A team of thirty doctors, nurses, radiographers, administrators and domestics from the Interventional Radiology team at Aintree aim to climb Snowdon, the third highest mountain in the UK, on Saturday 8th September in aid of the HELP Appeal. For more information and to make a donation, please click HERE.