Specialist emergency doctors have joined the Yorkshire Air Ambulance crew in a move aimed at saving more lives.
A new Yorkshire Critical Care Team has been set up which will see 11 consultants in emergency medicine and anaesthesia working on helicopter 12 hours a day all year round.
The team will carry additional drugs and will be equipped to administer anaesthesia and perform life-saving surgical procedures at the scene of an incident.
Dr Andrew Pountney, clinical lead for the new team, said: “We have had doctors flying with Yorkshire Air Ambulance on an ad hoc basis for over 10 years now.
“But thanks to this initiative we now have a dedicated and funded system to ensure that a consultant with appropriate training and experience in pre-hospital emergency medicine can
respond every day of the year.”
The doctors, who have been seconded, will support exisiting Yorkshire Air Ambulance paramedics.
Dr Pountney added: “This is about complementing the excellent service already provided by Yorkshire Air Ambulance paramedics and other frontline response teams.
“For the vast majority of the time the doctors will have a vital role providing support for the paramedics when they are using their extended skills.
“The doctors will also be able to make advanced clinical decisions and deliver critical care interventions very quickly, including pre-hospital emergency anaesthesia.
"There will be occasions when having an experienced doctor on board will mean that certain life-saving procedures can be done on scene.”