Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance flies 10,000th mission

Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance flies 10,000th mission

17-Jun-2014 Source: DSAA

Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance announced this afternoon that it had carried out its 10,000th mission.

The Charity’s EC135 helicopter, Pilot Max Hoskins, Paramedic Mark Williams and Consultant Doctor Ian Mews attended the incident which took place in the Shaftesbury area at 13.45 pm today.

The patient, Carissa Ealson (24) was taking part in a cross country horse riding event with her youngest sister Victoria when she suffered a fall.  She was treated at the scene before being airlifted at 14.25 pm, arriving at Dorset County Hospital in Dorchester at 14.48 pm.

After arriving at hospital, Carissa underwent further tests and x-rays.  Fortunately the results showed that she had not broken any bones and did not suffer any other serious injuries to her back, neck or hips and was discharged from hospital later in the day.

Speaking on behalf of her sister, Stacey Ealson called the Charity with an update and said, “We are really grateful to the Air Ambulance for all their help and are so pleased that Carissa is going to be OK.  She has now left hospital with some pain relief medication and hopefully will feel better soon.”

Bill Sivewright, Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance Chief Executive Officer said, “Every one of the missions we fly is the result of somebody suffering a potentially life-threatening injury or accident and it is not a number that we celebrate.  It simply demonstrates the need for an Air Ambulance that services the counties of Dorset and Somerset.

“During the past year and with generous support from the public, we have been able to purchase new items of equipment which has not only improved our normal Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS), but has also enhanced our patient transfer capability and in turn has given patients the best possible chance of survival and recovery.

“We would like express our thanks to everyone who supports the Charity and hope they feel as proud as we are, to be making such a difference to so many people’s lives.”

In 2013 alone the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance attended 608 incidents of which 304 took place in Somerset and 238 in Dorset.  The outstanding number took place on the borders of neighbouring counties: Devon, North Somerset and Wiltshire.

Of the incidents attended two hundred and seventy three (273) patients had injuries of a medical nature, one hundred and thirty three (133), people were involved in road traffic incidents, one hundred and twelve (112) patients were treated with trauma symptoms and eighty five (85) patients needed assistance after suffering an injury during a sporting or leisure activity. Four (4) patients needed treatment at a more specialist hospital which required an air ambulance transfer and one (1) patient was involved in an Industrial incident.

One of the patients carried was Georgina Sapiano from North Petherton.  Georgina suddenly collapsed while at work.  After getting to hospital, doctors determined that she had suffered a subarachnoid brain haemorrhage and needed an emergency operation by specialists at Bristol Frenchay Hospital.  Time was something that she did not have.  Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance airlifted Georgina from Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton and landed at Bristol Frenchay less than 15 minutes later.  She underwent immediate surgery.

“I cannot thank the Air Ambulance enough.  I remember waking up and speaking to a hospital brain surgeon.  He told me I had been airlifted to hospital and was now in Bristol.  He explained that I had suffered a brain haemorrhage and that when I arrived I had 20 minutes to live before they performed emergency surgery.  Since the incident, I have married my wonderful man Marco and was privileged to be with my daughter when she gave birth to twins.  I have experienced these special moments only because the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance saved my life.”

Another patient Val Hayes from Dorchester suffered life-threatening injuries after an incident involving a tractor.  Whilst in fields she hit some bumpy ground and fell off the tractor which subsequently drove over her.  She broke all her ribs apart from three, broke her sternum and collarbone, lacerated her liver, fractured her pelvis and broke both her right leg and ankle.  Val remembers nothing until she awoke in Southampton General Hospital a week later.  She spent nearly four weeks in Southampton before being transferred to Dorset County Hospital in Dorchester where she could be nearer to home.  Val is now back riding her horses and walking her dogs.

“Words cannot describe how grateful I am to the crew of the Air Ambulance and the ICU staff at hospital.  The prompt attention I received really did save my life,” she said.

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