Rotary Club Of Warwick

Feb24 - Helipads for Hospitals

John Novell, a former RAF Helicopter Air rescue pilot told Warwick Rotarians about his campaign to ensure that all critical care hospitals have their own Helipad.

President David Brain has adopted the Air Ambulance as his charity for the year. Members were surprised to hear that although the UK is covered by 42 Air Ambulance services, all funded by volunteers, this is not matched by hospitals with helipads to receive them. Often the Air Ambulance has to land on an adjacent playing field and patients are then transferred to an ambulance to complete their journey. With only the most critically ill patients being transferred this way, time is of the essence with many patients needing attention within the “golden hour”. Fortunately for us Walsgrave Hospital does have a helipad on the roof of their car park

John who is also a Rotarian in Rutland, set up Helipads for Hospitals (H4H) as a charity in 2016 with the initial aim of providing a helipad at Leicester Royal Infirmary, followed by Queens Hospital at Nottingham. Helipads are best located on hospital rooftops using a lightweight aluminium deck. John has set up a local collection system in his area for Aluminium drinks cans, which are crushed at HMP Stratton into metre cube pallets. It will take about 1 million cans crushed and smelted to be able to construct one Helipad. This has the additional environmental benefit of increasing the re-cycling of cans, as far too many go to landfill, meaning less aluminium has to be mined, and less import spend. This could be a free resource reminiscent of the airplanes built during the war using pots and pans!

Thanking John for his lively presentation Rotarian Graham Suggett said we had been unaware of the shortfall in Helipads, and agreed it was essential that these are provided at the earliest opportunity. Club will explore how Rotarians across our area can help them achieve their target and President David Brain presented John with a cheque to help their work.

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