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Helimed

Summer 2020

NEWS

GWAAC on the frontline Our latest updates

How you’ve supported us Read stories from some of our inspirational patients

Your Charity, Saving Lives Together


WELCOME

Hello and Welcome to Helimed News T

he last few months have been challenging for everyone, and I’m sure there has been a great deal of uncertainty and anxiety along the way. For us clinically here at GWAAC, there has been a lot of change in the way we work due to COVID-19.

The main challenge we have faced is being able to continue offering the same high standard of critical care to our patients, whilst ensuring our staff remain safe. This has meant that we have had to undertake complex procedures whilst wearing hot and uncomfortable PPE, such as coveralls, eye protection, face masks or respirator hoods. During the height of the pandemic, we provided GWAAC Specialist Paramedics and some of our specialist equipment to support and assist the NHS with inter-hospital transfers of critically-ill patients. You can read an update on what it’s been like to work on the frontline during the pandemic on page 16. Despite the challenges COVID-19 has delivered, the team have forged ahead with continuous ways of improving patient care. We have introduced new heart monitors, ventilators and chest compression devices. We have successfully appointed our first Advanced Practitioner in Critical Care, Vicki Brown, and a Deputy Air Operations Officer, Jack Kilminster (read more on page 5). In August 2020 we welcome three new trainees - two training to become Specialist Paramedics and one training to become a Critical Care Doctor.

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There have been improvements around the base to support staff welfare, with an outdoor eating area giving them some much needed space and social distance and a relaxing environment during downtime when on shift. I am immensely proud of the team – both clinical and charity. They have all stepped up to the mark and delivered a fantastic level of service despite the challenges and hardships of the last few months. Everyone has really pulled together and positively contributed to ensure we are able to continue providing the very highest level of care to our patients. We have been very touched by the unstinting support of the public. We are overwhelmed by the generosity of so many people who ensured we received a constant supply of wonderful gifts. We are very appreciative of all that has been done to help our crew enjoy any downtime they may have to rest and recuperate with the provision of food, drink and most importantly, chocolate! Thank you for all that you have done to support our service during this hard time. We wouldn’t be able to do what we do without people like you, and for that we remain incredibly grateful.

John Wood Air Operations Officer

Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

@GWAAC


Page 16: COVID-19 on the frontline

Contents Operational update

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How you’ve supported us

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Give life, through a gift in your will

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Jasmine’s story

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BRAND NEW: Fundraising Guide

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Fundraising dates for the diary

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Great Western Heartstarters tackle knife crime

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Our corporate supporters

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COVID-19 on the frontline: Interview with a Specialist Paramedic

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Sallyanne’s story

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Spotted! Your Images

As a GWAAC supporter you can update your will, or make one for the first time, free of charge through one of our professional will-making partners. Find out more on pages 8-9. Page 18: Spotted! Your Images

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Other ways to support GWAAC

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Follow Us

Contact Us 0303 4444 999

Free Will Offer

www.gwaac.com

info@gwaac.com

Great Western Air Ambulance Charity, 3rd Floor,

Great Western Air Ambulance Charity

County Gates, Ashton Road, Bristol, BS3 2JH

@GWAAC

Registered charity number 1121300

@GWAAC

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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How we have served our communities during COVID-19 D

uring the COVID-19 outbreak, our crew have been adapting to the fast-changing environment, stepping up to support our NHS colleagues in the fight against the pandemic. At the beginning of lockdown in March, we saw the number of call-outs we were receiving drop, as people were following government advice and staying home. This continued across April and the first half of May, with numbers starting to rise back up to ‘normal’ levels with the ease of lockdown.

Our crew have remained right here and ready to respond to those in urgent need at all times. During the quieter months, we were able to step up our support in the COVID-19 response, assisting with inter-hospital transfers of critically ill COVID-19 patients, and supporting on a 24/7 Trauma Advice Line, providing on-call support for ambulance crews during the pandemic. You can read more on how the crew dealt with working during the pandemic from Specialist Paramedic, Jack Kilminster, on page 16.

J A N U A RY - J U N E 2 0 2 0

766

CALL-OUTS

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HELICOPTER

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CR IT ICAL - CAR E CAR

Did you know that over two thirds of our jobs are responded to by critical care car? Our cars allow us to reach more patients across the region. Whilst our day crew respond by helicopter from 7am – 7pm, we have a second crew operating from the cars between 1pm and 1am. The cars also allow the day crew to respond when the helicopter cannot fly – due to bad weather or maintenance.

Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

@GWAAC


Before the lockdown, we were receiving over five call-outs a day on average. J A N U A RY

167

F E B R U A RY

132

M A R C H

112

The final week of March saw the UK placed into lockdown. During this week we received just 16 call-outs, a much lower figure than we had seen previously.

A P R I L 77 A reduction of over 50% in call-outs from what we would expect to see as people stayed home following government guidelines. This reduction allowed our crew to assist with 24 inter-hospital transfers, including critically-ill COVID-19 patients, and offer advice on a 24/7 Trauma Advice Line.

M AY 121 More than 50% of May’s call-outs were in the final two weeks, as lockdown rules began to ease and we saw hot weather bring many people outdoors.

J U N E 157

744

H OURS

Across April, May and June, GWAAC Specialist Paramedics gave 744 hours to the Trauma Advice Line – working 31 24 hour shifts.

Over 60% of our call-outs in June were to trauma-related incidents. Our busiest day saw the crew called to nine call-outs across the region. This month brought our average daily call-outs back to over five incidents a day.

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uge congratulations go to our former Acting Air Operations Officer and Specialist Paramedic, Vicki Brown. Vicki was the first in the South West to be appointed in a new Advanced Practitioner in Critical Care role here at GWAAC. Vicki has been with our crew since 2012, and was the first Specialist Paramedic in the South West to be eligible for the new role after a rigorous assessment process. The role will see Vicki provide leadership and education to ensure that GWAAC’s crew remain at the forefront of pre-hospital emergency medicine, continually improving patient care.

We are immensely proud to have Vicki on our team – and we know you will all join us in thanking her for her hard work and dedication to GWAAC and the people in our region over the years. Congratulations also go to Specialist Paramedic in Critical Care, Jack Kilminster, who has taken on the role of Deputy Air Operations Officer following Vicki’s appointment.

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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How YOU have been amazing! W

e have been overwhelmed by the show of support we have received from you, our communities. From taking on weird and wonderful challenges to raise money for us, to supplying gifts for our crew to keep them motivated during these challenging times. Your support has been needed now more than ever, and we want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has cast their mind to GWAAC during this time. We couldn’t do what we do without you, so thank you for helping us continue to be there to save lives.

The home-cooked meals donated by Bath Home Cooks

Funding support through the pandemic

Treats for the crew!

The cancellation of face-to-face events has resulted in a reduction of fundraising income.

Bath Home Cooks Feed the NHS donated home-cooked meals for our crew

Cam and Dursley Supporters group donated multiple gift hampers – including a regular fresh fruit donation

Codrington Village Fete donated a luxury hamper of goodies

Thanks go to all the many supporters who have provided funding to help with this deficit, as well as to help source and provide PPE and other equipment to help keep our crew and patients safe during the COVID-19 response, including:

Almondsbury C of E Primary School painted this amazing mural in their playground for the crew to see when flying overhead

And this is just to name a few – a huge thank you to everyone who donated kind gifts to our crew during this time – it has been much appreciated whilst they have been working hard alongside the NHS during COVID-19.

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Lions Clubs International Foundation

Masonic Charitable Foundation

Hospital Saturday Fund

The Sumner Wilson Charitable Trust

The Carr-Gregory Trust

AirBP

Western Power Distribution

Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

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Left: Pupils at Almondsbury C of E Primary School with their Mural. Right: The Funky Farmer’s close shave for GWAAC.

Funky Farmer goes the extra mile to raise money for GWAAC Richard, aka The Funky Farmer, raised an incredible £5,200 (and rising) for GWAAC by taking a close shave on Saturday 4th July. Richard, who is well known in the farming community as ‘The Funky Farmer’, started growing a beard for the first time during lockdown, and decided to shave it off, along with his hair and eyebrows, to raise money for our charity. “The air ambulance means a lot to me and the farming community and it’s certainly something that is appreciated by those of us that often work alone and in inaccessible places, where normal help can’t get to in times of a medical emergency,” Richard Richard’s fundraising reached people all over the world – with supporters donating £50 per eyebrow, and around 300 donations on his JustGiving page. The money raised from his head shave could pay for two potentially lifesaving missions, including the helicopter, fuel, Pilot, Specialist Paramedic, Critical Care Doctor, drugs, equipment, blood and plasma.

“The money raised by Rich will be a huge boost to GWAAC and will enable us to continue delivering our lifesaving critical care service. The GWAAC crew are massively grateful to Rich and would like to pass on our heartfelt thanks and appreciation.” - Dr Ed Valentine, Lead Doctor

The power of social media! We were overwhelmed by the response to our Facebook post in April asking for your help in sourcing some powered respirator hoods to help keep our crew safe during COVID-19. Our post was shared 964 times, reaching over 76,000 people and thanks to you all, we managed to source the essential PPE kit needed. A special shout out goes to Terry from Cheltenham Guardians who sourced and donated one of the powered respirator hoods, (as can be seen in the image on page 3), driving all the way to Bedford to collect it for us.

Pogo-ninja Owen! Nine-year-old Owen from Stroud spent the month of June hopping on his pogo-stick, all in aid of GWAAC! Owen smashed his original challenge of 10,000 hops, completing a whopping 15,000 hops and raising over £1,000 for our lifesaving service – amazing!

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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GI VE L I FE

Give life, through a gift in your will “Though we’ve come a long way, in critical care nothing stands still. A gift in your will could help us research, develop and deliver more innovative and effective techniques, meaning even more people survive and recover to live life to the full. Thank you.” Professor Jonathan Benger Founding Medical Director, Trustee, and Critical Care Doctor

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ore and more people are choosing to include Great Western Air Ambulance Charity in their will. Last year one fifth of our total income came from people like you doing just that. It’s a way of passing on the comforting feeling of knowing that GWAAC will always be there.

Your gift could help us do so much more, such as developing innovative techniques through research and sharing know-how with other air ambulances and emergency medical teams across the UK and around the globe. How much you leave is entirely up to you. Once you’ve provided for those closest to you, you could give a share of what’s left of your estate or a fixed amount (please include our full name, address and registered charity number). We also receive gifts from those who have been left a gift in a will and have decided to pass on some of that legacy to GWAAC, using a Deed of Variation.

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Make or update your will free of charge As a GWAAC supporter you can make or update your will free of charge. Using one of our will-making partners, you can have a home visit, telephone or video appointment, or go online. Visit www.gwaac.com/gifts-in-wills where you can also download our free booklet Give life, with a gift in your will.

To talk about a gift in your will, contact our Gifts in Wills Coordinator, Valerie Harland, who would love to hear from you. Please email valerie.harland@gwaac.com with your phone number and the best time for her to call you.

Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

@GWAAC


“GWAAC was one of mum’s favourite charities and she’d requested half of the collection at her funeral go to GWAAC. Shortly after, I was looking to volunteer locally. GWAAC needed volunteers for the Bristol Balloon Fiesta, so I signed up and haven’t looked back! I’ve seen big changes. When I think of the old base… freezing cold in the winter, with no proper facilities. I was thrilled to attend the Royal opening for the new base, which is fantastic. I’m so proud GWAAC is in my will. I want to pass on my trust for the charity and pay tribute to my mum, by giving the gift of life” Janet Adams, GWAAC Volunteer

Janet at GWAAC’s Royal Opening of the new base

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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Jasmine’s Story P

arents Niky and Ryan’s lives were turned upside down on the morning of 31st October 2019, as any parents’ worst nightmare became a reality. Their four-year-old daughter, Jasmine, had stopped breathing – she was unconscious, suffering a respiratory arrest and was in need of emergency care, fast. GWAAC’s Critical Care Team were dispatched to the incident in Gloucestershire with Critical Care Doctors, Scott and Andrew, and Specialist Paramedic in Critical Care, Jack, arriving on scene in less than 20 minutes.

Jasmine was very poorly. She needed a prehospital emergency anaesthesia – an intervention that our specialist crew can deliver on scene. They put Jasmine into an induced coma,

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taking over her breathing and preventing any further complications, before airlifting her to Bristol Royal Children’s Hospital. Jasmine’s mum, Niky, recalls: “By the time your team arrived I was crumbling, at a loss of what to do or what to expect. I will never forget Scott, Andrew and Jack’s reassurances to me. I knew we now also had Emergency Doctors onsite, trained in Paediatrics, and they had her, they had ‘this’. I felt complete trust in them. During the worst, most horrific episode that any parent could be in, I felt safe.” Niky continued: “I will remember Scott talking to me for the rest of my life. The collaborative approach, communication, safety, checking and re-checking during fast paced treatment and decision making between teams was beyond what could be called perfect. Everything was

Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

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Left: Jasmine with her parents and Scott from GWAAC’s Critical Care Team Right: Jasmine at home following her recovery.

“There is not a day that has gone by since, where we have not thought of you all. You saved Jasmines life, and ours, that day” Niky, Jasmine’s mum

co-ordinated and undertaken to ensure that Jasmine was alive, that she was stable and safe – and that she remained so.” Jasmine spent almost two months in Bristol Royal Children’s Hospital, where she was diagnosed with a very rare syndrome, ROHHAD – of which there are only 12 cases in the UK and 100 worldwide. She has been described as a “whirlwind of positivity”, taking life each day as it comes and fighting on through her recent diagnosis. Niky said: “For us life could have been over on Halloween. In the most awful, devastating

situation you got to us and you took control. You saved Jasmine and gave her the opportunity to fight on through ROHHAD and to live. To have a life and to enjoy it. To embrace every minute and make a difference. We have no sadness over her diagnosis, only thanks that we are able to be on this journey together - through whatever that may be – and that’s because of you all. We can never thank you all enough for this.” Unfortunately, this wasn’t the only day that Jasmine needed our services. For many, needing an air ambulance crew just once in their lifetime is something no one expects, however, on 29th April this year, Jasmine experienced another arrest at home – receiving the care of our Critical Care Team once again. Jasmine continues to battle through her diagnosis, facing each day with strength and a smile. Jasmine is responding well to treatment, and her progress will help research around ROHHAD for others who are diagnosed with it in the future.

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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FU N D R A I S I N G G UI D E

New Fundraising Guide to help you help us!

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elp your loved ones, your loved-ones’loved-ones, yourself, your neighbour, your neighbour’s neighbour, your boss, your colleague, your friends… When you support GWAAC, you help everyone in our community. Which is why we’ve tried to make it as easy as possible for you to help us help you! We’ve just launched our very own Fundraising Guide crammed full of ideas, tips, and useful information to inspire and motivate our communities to do something awesome (and fun!) to keep their local air ambulance flying.

From our seasoned supper club enthusiasts, to those who have the time but can’t think of what to do to help, this pack has everything you need to make a successful fundraiser. The key, in our eyes, is to do something you’re good at, enjoy or want to challenge yourself with. There are loads of real-world ideas and examples of how supporters have gone about their fundraising within the pack; people like 11-year-old Cookie-Monster, Xander, who raised a whopping £360 from his cookie sale, or Grover Farm chickens who pecked their way to an eggs-cellent £140, and former patient, Stuart’s, ‘Flights of Fancy’ dinner parties which have raised £1,200 – all to help GWAAC continue to be there for those in need.

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Download your free Fundraising Guide and resources

at www.gwaac.com/fundraise-for-gwaac

So, what would you do for your fundraiser? Maybe you want to challenge your colleagues at work with a virtual sweepstake, or host a ‘Come Dine with Me’ challenge with your friends. If you would like to chat with one of our Community Coordinators who can help answer any questions you might have, provide tailored tips, advice and support on what you might be able to do, then get in touch! You can find their contact details online at www.gwaac.com/fundraise-for-gwaac.

Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

@GWAAC


EVENT S CALENDAR

Events Calendar

If you’re looking to fundraise for GWAAC – here are some handy days to theme your fundraising activity around!

AUGUST 13th Left Handers Day Try and go the whole day using only your left or right hand (the opposite of what’s normal for you) for sponsorship. 13th – 19th Allotment week Grow some fruit and veggies and sell them in your community for a donation to GWAAC. 19th – 31st We’re excited to be working with superstar baker Briony Williams to bring you our very own baking event! Get your mixing bowls at the ready, and keep your eyes on our social media and website for more information – will you rise to the challenge?

SEPTEMBER 7th - 13th Air Ambulance Week Support your local air ambulance by planning some fundraising for the week!

OCTOBER 9th - 15th National Curry Week Host a GWAAC Curry Night! 10th – 16th Chocolate Week Host a chocolate afternoon tea or think up some chocolatey challenges for you. and your friends 21st Apple / Orchard Day Host a cider tasting evening with your friends and family with donations to GWAAC.

NOVEMBER 5th Fireworks Night Host a bonfire party with friends, or ask your local community groups to consider doing theirs for GWAAC this year. 22nd Stir up Sunday Make up some Christmas Cookies to sell for donations to GWAAC.

DECEMBER 1st Giving Tuesday A day of global giving to celebrate charities – volunteer your time, donate, organise a fundraising event, take on a challenge, or have a clear out and give items to our charity shop.

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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GR E AT W E S T E R N H E AR T S TA R TERS

Great Western Heartstarters tackling knife crime with new partnership

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reat Western Heartstarters has teamed up with Avon and Somerset Police, Severn Major Trauma Network, North Bristol NHS Trust and South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust to develop a new initiative aimed at preventing knife crime. Great Western Heartstarters, which currently teaches school pupils across the region how to perform CPR to those in need, was launched in 2016. Our volunteers have taught thousands of pupils lifesaving skills so far. Here, Vice Chair and Emergency Medicine Registrar, Pascale, explains the new project: “I am an Emergency Medicine Registrar based in Bristol. I grew up in Devon and trained in London and the South East. I was delighted to return to the South West in August 2019 when I joined Great Western Heartstarters team. My professional interests are education, research, pre-hospital care and resuscitation. With Great Western Heartstarters I have focused my role as vice-chair of the committee on developing our partnerships with multiagency projects including violence reduction. Following the success of our Great Western Heartstarters CPR workshops over the last four years several schools asked whether we could provide follow up sessions to train students

in how to respond to a victim of knife crime. I worked with Great Western Air Ambulance Charity, Avon and Somerset Police, Severn Major Trauma Network, North Bristol NHS Trust Emergency Medicine and South Western Registrar Pascale Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust to develop the ‘Blunt Truth Project’ – an exciting and collaborative knife crime prevention initiative. The aim of our workshop, to be delivered in schools in 2021, is to empower children with the confidence and first aid skills needed to help a victim of knife crime, as well as equipping them with the tools to report knife crime activity anonymously. We continue to teach basic first aid in schools including the recovery position, resuscitation and defibrillation, and have taught nearly 5,000 young people these vital skills since our inception in October 2016. It has been a privilege to work with Great Western Heartstarters and I look forward to continuing our developing role in the community.” Dr Pascale Avery

Find out more about our Great Western Heartstarters programme in schools at www.gwaac.com/heartstarters

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Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

@GWAAC


MEET A H EAR T STAR T ER

Local companies making a difference

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t GWAAC we are lucky to work with some wonderful businesses across the region. Corporate partnerships are a great way for us to connect with local people, working together to create fundraising and volunteering projects that are inspiring and rewarding for everyone involved.

Rotork run the Bath Half Marathon for GWAAC As Bath’s local air ambulance, we are always pleased to receive support from local companies and businesses, so we were delighted to welcome a team of 40 employees from local Bath company, Rotork, to our Bath Half Marathon team this year. Despite not all being able to run on the day due to COVID-19, the team managed to exceed their fundraising target of £7,000, raising £7,793! “GWAAC is a service that any person, anywhere in the local area, at any time could need. At Rotork, we recognised that this is an essential organisation so selected it as the charity of choice for our corporate charity entry for the Bath Half Marathon 2020. The team at GWAAC were incredibly helpful in assisting us with our fundraising target by providing us with resources and readily available ideas.” Adam Whittaker, One Rotork Team Leader

CGI’s Summer Race Across Europe Local Bristol and Gloucester employees from IT consulting company CGI are taking on a virtual challenge to help stay active this summer and raise some money for their local air ambulance. Teams of up to five people from across CGI and its clients are competing to race virtually across Europe from CGI’s office in Bristol to Baku, Azerbaijan in ten weeks! Team members are logging any fitness activity during this time online and converting this into miles as they race from Bristol to Bruges, Brussels, Bonn, Bratislava, Budapest, Belgrade, Bankso, Babaeski, Bolu, Batumi and finally finishing in Baku, right at the edge of Europe - a journey of nearly 5,000km! The team have already raised over 50% of their fundraising target thanks to generous donations. We can’t wait to follow their virtual journey over the summer and see how far they are able to race for GWAAC! This year has presented many challenges for companies. If your team want to join together to do something positive that will boost morale, get in touch with Holly Adlem, Corporate Partnerships Coordinator, at holly.adlem@gwaac.com.

Left: The Rotork Marathon Team Right: CGI Staff competing in the virtual race

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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C HA L L E N G E S O F WO R K I NG O N THE F RO NTLINE

Challenges of working on the frontline during COVID-19

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he last few months have been exceptionally challenging as many of us have had to navigate through uncertain and unprecedented times. We spoke to Specialist Paramedic in Critical Care, Jack, to find out how it has been to work on the frontline throughout COVID-19. How has COVID-19 changed your operations?

It was difficult to anticipate just how big an effect COVID-19 would have on patients, the service, ourselves and colleagues. Throughout the pandemic our priority was to maintain our core service - providing specialist care to the most critically-ill and injured. In order to do this our team adapted in line with official guidance to maintain our core function. GWAAC’s COVID-19 equipment used during inter-hospital transfers

(and at times uncomfortable) PPE adds an extra layer of stress to our bodies and can make it harder to identify verbal and non-verbal communication cues. How have you felt personally working during COVID-19?

SPCC Jack during inter-hospital transfers

Thankfully there are many success stories, however, on occasion we do have the unfortunate task of delivering sad news to families. This is such a delicate matter and so hard to do in PPE. This is by far and away one of the most challenging and upsetting things any of us have had to do during this time. Until official guidance changes we continue to implement additional safety measures to protect our patients, the public and our crew. Have you got any words for our supporters?

The biggest change operationally was the introduction of higher grade personal protective equipment (PPE). Similar to many health care providers caring for patients throughout the pandemic, we continue to wear an increased level of protection. What is it like working in PPE and what challenges does this throw up? Some incidents we attend can be physically or mentally demanding. Wearing additional

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Throughout the pandemic all of us have been taken aback by the kind support of local businesses and the public we serve. These have been tough times for all and we could not provide the service we do without the good will of the volunteers and supporters. Whether you are a life-long supporter, you play the lottery, participate in fundraising events or make a one-off donation, every penny goes towards keeping this lifesaving service ready to respond. On behalf of all the clinical team, we give our whole-hearted thanks. Huge thanks to Jack Kilminster, along with the rest of our GWAAC crew, for continuing to do such a difficult job throughout COVID-19, ensuring that we are there for those who need us.

Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

@GWAAC


SALLYANNE’S ST ORY

Sallyanne, Ed and Greg at GWAAC’s air base

Sallyanne’s first time back on a horse

Sallyanne has now qualified as a Grade 2 Para Rider

Sallyanne’s story - five years on

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t’s five years since GWAAC’s crew were called to Sallyanne’s horse riding accident. Since that life-changing day, she has taken herself from having to wash in a kitchen sink, to being back on her horse representing Britain as a para dressage rider in competitions - and has made amazing new memories with her two children. “I look at how far I have come and I smile” On October 10th 2015, Sallyanne was riding at a cross country event, when an accident left her with a severe spinal cord injury and paralysis from the waist down. Due to the serious nature of Sallyanne’s injuries, our crew were called to scene to administer strong pain relief and take control of her injuries before airlifting her to Southmead Hospital. “One of the Doctors, Greg, held my hand the whole time and never left my side throughout the whole procedure; the reassurance he gave me was wonderful. I knew I was in safe hands,” said Sallyanne. After a nine-hour operation on her spine, and a further six months in hospital, Sallyanne was finally allowed to return home to her two children, Harry and Stella, to begin rebuilding her life.

From learning to drive again, to going on amazing holidays with her kids and organising charity fundraising events, including a ball in aid of GWAAC that raised £6,000, Sallyanne has achieved incredible things and now works supporting other individuals who have suffered spinal injuries. However, her biggest achievement was getting back to her favourite hobby – and with the help and support of friends and family, Sallyanne not only achieved her goal of getting back on a horse, but has now qualified as a British Dressage Grade 2 Para rider, and has ridden for the country in a number of competitions. “GWAAC is a very close charity to me and my family. I would encourage people to donate and raise money for this local charity, as you never know when you or someone you know may need its services,” said Sallyanne.

To read more inspirational stories on how our GWAAC crew have helped those in need and made a difference, head to www.gwaac.com/patient-stories.

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

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O T HER WAY S T O H E L P G WA A C

Other ways to help GWAAC Shop for GWAAC •

Amazon Smile – If you’re a keen Amazon shopper log in via Amazon Smile and choose us as your selected charity – Amazon will make a donation to us for every purchase, at no extra cost or effort to you! smile.amazon.co.uk

Use sites like Easyfundraising or Give as you live when shopping online, just shop as normal and a donation is made to GWAAC. easyfundraising.org.uk giveasyoulive.com

Search for GWAAC •

Change your default search engine to Everyclick – select GWAAC as your charity and for every search you make a donation will be made to us! everyclick.com

Recycle for GWAAC •

If you’ve got clothes that can be recycled into something new drop them into one of our recycling clothes banks – find your local bank at: recyclingsolutions.org.uk/clothing-banks

Working from home? Recycle used printer ink cartridges with ThinkInks – request your free recycle bags and boxes online at: think-inks.uk

Turn unwanted books, games and DVDs into a donation to GWAAC with a free service from Ziffit at: ziffit.com/en-gb

Take the opportunity to have a clear out and get some boxes of items ready to donate to our new charity shop. Find out what you can and can’t donate online at: gwaac.com/charity-shop-donations

Interested in volunteering at our new charity shop? We’re opening a charity shop in Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol, this year. If you’re interested in volunteering and playing a vital role in our first ever charity shop, generating income and raising the profile of GWAAC – then get in touch and find out more at www.gwaac.com/volunteer Enjoyed reading Helimed News? Sign up to our e-newsletter to receive more regular updates about our lifesaving service. Be inspired with news from the crew, uplifting patient and community stories as well as opportunities to get involved at www.gwaac.com/newsletter.

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Helimed News Donate online at www.gwaac.com and support us on

@GWAAC


SP OT T ED

Spotted

Your messages and photos

@ASPoliceHorses An unusual opportunity for some helicopter training for Clifton today during his patrols of WSM – it was great landing near to our lorry by @GWAAC We hope all went well at the medical emergency you were attending nearby. #greatworkguys #Thankyouforallyoudo

@bowbridge_green @bsnils Yesterday at Perretts the air ambulance landed in a tight spot. They at distance allowed kids to look and have an explanation of why they were there. Thanks @GWAAC the adults enjoyed it too!

GWAAC landed on Rodborough Common this evening to deal with an incident. Hoping all are OK. Brilliant charity who do an amazing job round these parts.

We love receiving messages and photos of our helicopter and crew, including Charlie the Critical Care Bear, so keep them coming! You can tweet us – @GWAAC find us on Facebook – Great Western Air Ambulance Charity

@stu_snape_photos Got treated to a flypast over the garden from @gwaac at lunchtime today #stayhome #staysafe

@TheLukeBarnes Soooo @GWAAC just parallel parked right in front of me #999family

Helimed News The Magazine of Great Western Air Ambulance Charity Summer 2020

Instagram - @GWAAC or email pr@gwaac.com. You never know, you may be featured in the next issue!

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Please return to: Great Western Air Ambulance Charity, 3rd Floor, County Gates, Ashton Road, Bristol, BS3 2JH

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Profile for gwaac

Helimed News - Summer 2020  

Read the latest news from Great Western Air Ambulance Charity in the new edition of our bi-annual magazine, Helimed News. Hear how our suppo...

Helimed News - Summer 2020  

Read the latest news from Great Western Air Ambulance Charity in the new edition of our bi-annual magazine, Helimed News. Hear how our suppo...

Profile for gwaac
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