Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance provides a critical care service from 7.00am - 2.00am every day of the year. This is funded entirely by the charity and operates completely within NHS governance. Clinical and operational integration within the NHS is absolutely key to providing seamless, high-quality care pathways for patients. Pre-hospital critical care would not exist within Dorset and Somerset if it were not for Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance. This is because it is not available from the standard ambulance service. Coherent co-ordination and integration of this incredible clinical asset into the NHS system is strengthened by the closest of partnerships that we have with the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASfT).

Therefore, operationally, DSAA is, to all intents and purposes, a SWASfT critical care asset. All the patient care that we provide is delivered by NHS paramedics, nurses and doctors operating completely within NHS guidance. This explicit collaboration provides outstanding resilience and dramatically improves patient pathways.

NEXT: Collaboration exemplified throughout COVID-19