Potentially 800 more lives a year saved by Chancellor’s Statement

December 3, 2014 by Tracy

George OsborneThe Association of Air Ambulances (AAA), which represents the majority of Air Ambulance operations in the UK has welcomed today’s announcement from UK Chancellor, George Osborne which sees the relief of VAT to all charities who work as part of the Emergency Response Service and a further allocation of £7.5 million extra support for air ambulance charities across the UK.

The announcement gives the air ambulance charities a VAT saving of approximately £10 million over the next five years enabling them to invest further in their life-saving work.

The Chancellor also announced an allocation of £1 million to Great Western Air Ambulance, £1.5 million to Kent Surrey Sussex Air Ambulance Trust and a potential further £5 million being made available to all air ambulance charities.

AAA National Director, Clive DickinClive Dickin, AAA National Director said;

“We are delighted with the Chancellor’s announcement today.  In April’s budget the Chancellor introduced a rebate for VAT and duty charged on aviation fuel where it is used in helicopter emergency medical service missions of which we were extremely grateful.

“Today’s announcement comes following further lobbying and we have worked closely with our members, the All Party Parliamentary Group for Air Ambulances (APPGAA) and the RNLI to deliver the result on VAT.  The saving of £10 million over the next 5 years equates to 800 more patients per year being treated, potentially saving lives and improving patient outcomes.

The announcement sees not only a financial saving but also a relief of the administrative burden, allowing charities to recover all VAT and being able to treat all expenses equally across its operation. The use of trading companies and complex systems will no longer be required as a result of VAT relief.

Although the finite detail has not yet been fully provided, the AAA will be working with the Treasury and HMRC to gain a better understanding of this exciting news and advising its members of the resultant changes.