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Midlands Air Ambulance Airbase and Charity Headquarters

Our vitally important pre-hospital air ambulance-led service has grown significantly over our 30-year history. We are driven by a commitment to continuously improve patient care and become resilient to future changes. Challenges our service faces includes:

  • Annual rising demand for advanced patient care on scene – in line with West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) findings. For example, last year, demand rose by 13%
  • Increased complexity of patient needs requiring specialist skills and medicines - e.g. ‘hidden’ injuries from incidents involving stabbings and shootings. Ability to deliver advanced care and medicines post out of hospital cardiac arrest.
  • There are insufficient training facilities for the critical care paramedics and doctors

The solution

To help future-proof the service and address these challenges head on, we are developing a purpose-built airbase and charity headquarters, which will benefit patients across the whole of the Midlands.

The new facility, located in Cosford on the Shropshire/Staffordshire border, will feature clinical training facilities, which are fundamental to delivering the advanced training programmes required for our clinicians. This will ensure the critical care team are equipped to treat the increasingly complex patient cases and will enhance our daily lifesaving service.

Find out more about the new facility plans and benefits here.

A computer generated impression of the proposed Airbase and Charity Headquarters.

Why does Midlands Air Ambulance Charity need a new facility?

This project has been carefully considered for over three years and is part of our commitment to continuously improve advanced pre-hospital patient care across the Midlands and is a vital development for the whole of the region.

To ensure the service is future-proofed for decades to come and address current challenges including complexity of patient needs, increased demand and insufficient training facilities at our current airbases, we believe that the development of a purpose-built airbase and charity headquarters, complete with clinical training simulation suite, will ensure the Midlands growing population of six million plus, has appropriate helicopter-led emergency care provision.

Why does Midlands Air Ambulance Charity need a new facility?

What will the new airbase and charity headquarters look like?

The proposed new facilities will include space for our daily operations, including two helipads for our aircraft, space for our rapid response vehicles and critical care cars. In addition, we will create a training and simulation centre, as well as research and development facilities, the main charity offices, and warehousing for charity vehicles and storage. There will also be space to host fundraising events, and meeting rooms for the public.

This Centre for Excellence will futureproof our vitally important organisation as we will have a purpose-built facility to fit the specific needs of our essential emergency service.

What will the new airbase and charity headquarters look like?

Timescales

Construction started on the Neachley Lane, Cosford site 3rd March 2021, with the final project expected to be completed late 2022.

You can keep up to date on the progress of the build using the time-lapse feed below.

What will be the benefits of the airbase and charity headquarters?

This new facility will help future-proof the delivery of our pre-hospital critical care for the Midlands region. The benefits of the new building are:

Patient Benefits

  • Deliver enhanced Helicopter Emergency Medical Service across the entire Midlands six county region
  • Provide a rapid despatch location
  • In time, the facility will allow the charity to extend operating times to treat a greater number of patients
  • Develop clinical skills and talent – as a recognised ‘centre of clinical excellence for pre-hospital emergency medicine
  • Maintain a sustainable charity and future-proof the Midlands primary pre-hospital emergency service.
  • Provide space to increase clinical research capabilities and able future innovation for help care provision.
Patient Benefits

Operational Benefits

  • Better response times – providing a rapid despatch location means the crew will be able to reach most areas within 8 minutes (compared to the current all areas in 15 mins).
  • Longer operating hours – the facility will enable the charity to extend operations times from 7am – 9pm, staggered throughout our operating patch, to 7am – 9pm across all the regions we serve.
  • Increased capacity - to support the region’s six-million, as demand for the service grows in line with growing population and during times of regional/national emergency (e.g. crisis situations such as the recent pandemic).
Operational Benefits

Clinical benefits

  • Improve patient care - the training facilities will enhance the team’s advanced clinical knowledge, supporting the treatment of patients directly by providing dedicated space for continuous learning.
  • Develop talent - support with advanced pre-hospital training, working closely with the healthcare and education communicates, the centre will support attract and train future critical care paramedics and doctors.
  • Create an environment for research and development - provide space to increase clinical research capabilities and able future innovation for care provision.
Clinical benefits

Charity benefits

  • Improved working environment - currently our medical teams work out of portacabins. This facility will enhance quality of life at work, with sufficient space for rest and debriefing, which is especially important after challenging lifesaving missions.
  • Reduce long term operating costs - investing in the land and building will ensure that the charity has a forever home that will provide future sustainability and remove leasehold and rental costs.
  • Create a community space – to further facilitate the charity’s work across the region with supports and donors, including the popular education programme and help to reduce third party costs for fundraising event space.
Charity benefits

Summary

We are extremely proud to be developing our new facility in the Shropshire area, and thank the public, local businesses, parish councils and MPs for their support of the project.

Our new airbase and charity headquarters to be a vital development for advanced pre-hospital patient care across the whole of the region.

It will ensure the critical care team are equipped to treat the increasingly complex patient cases and will enhance our daily lifesaving service.

If you have any further questions, or would like to support the project personally, or through your business or grant giving organisation, please click the contact us button below.

Images courtesy of Nigel Harniman Photography

Summary

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