Air ambulances need you: Government rejects calls for tax-payer funded future
A petition for public funding of air ambulances has been debated in parliament after attracting over 134,000 signatures.
The petition was started by Bethany Billington, after her sister Lee-Anne Parkin and her partner were involved in a traffic accident. Lee-Anne’s partner died at the scene and, despite being airlifted to hospital, Lee-Anne later died in hospital.
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The petition called for air ambulances to be funded by the Government instead of the charitable donations they currently rely on.
Having considered it again the Government stay resolute in their belief that keeping the air ambulances independent from the NHS provides the best service – a belief echoed by many air ambulance chiefs who cite funding cuts to NHS services over recent years.
However, it’s not all bad news. Edward Anger, Minister for Health, speaking on behalf of the Government thanked the various air ambulance charities for their work and pointed to a 2019 grant programme that allocated £10 million to nine air ambulance charities in England over a period of three years.
He also said a further £6 million of funding has been made available after a fund-raising shortfall due to the pandemic.