The Air Ambulance NI benefited from the brilliant Christmas Tree Festival which was held in the Bawnacre Centre in Irvinestown last week.

The spectacular display consisted of over 60 decorated Christmas trees presented by local groups, clubs, schools and voluntary organisations to reflect their good work in the local area. Families also had the opportunity to visit Santa’s Grotto in the Bawnacre for a family photograph. All funds raised will be presented to Air Ambulance via their local Trustee Rodney Connor.

The Helicopter Emergency Service (HEMS), providing critical advanced care to those who have been critically injured, has been tasked 580 times since its launch in late July 2017. Between January 1, 2018 and October 31, 2018 there were 381 taskings with 42 of these in the Fermanagh and Omagh Council area.

“Our HEMS team have been able to reach these patients, be it at the roadside, farmyard or city centre, providing clinical interventions and life-saving medical treatment at the scene and in the air.

“We know that patients are alive today due to the care we provide in conjunction with the whole Health Service,” said Clinical Lead, Dr Darren Monaghan before adding.

“From our base at the Maze site near Lisburn the Air Ambulance can reach any area of Northern Ireland in 25 minutes.

“Our primary role is to deliver advanced critical care, benefitting those whose lives are at serious risk following significant injury or trauma by bringing urgent medical assistance directly to patients. To keep this vital service going we need £5,500 per day – we must raise £2 million each year,” he said.

“We are extremely grateful for the generosity and support of everyone and it is only with your support that we can provide this essential service so vital in our rural area,” he concluded.