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Air Ambulance Services

Volume 477: debated on Monday 16 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what personnel make up an air ambulance team; and which personnel are funded by the NHS; (211282)

(2) what percentage of air ambulances are staffed by personnel funded by the NHS.

Information on personnel that make up an air ambulance team is not collected centrally.

The Government appreciate that air ambulances have a role in delivering emergency care, but are also aware that they are very expensive to operate and that past research failed to show that they were strong candidates to be funded wholly from finite national health service resources. In view of these factors, and to strike an appropriate balance, the NHS has, since 1 April 2002, normally met the cost of clinical staff on air ambulances. However, the exact make-up of such funded clinical staff will be a matter for the NHS and the air ambulance charities to agree locally.