Thames Valley and Chiltern air ambulance completes 15,000th mission

Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance The helicopter completed its 15,000th mission at the end of February

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The Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance has completed its 15,000th mission since it began service in 1999.

Known as BOB - as it serves Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire - the helicopter airlifted a man injured in a road accident near Reading.

He was thrown from a vehicle and was taken to John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford for treatment.

The trust said introducing full-time doctor-led crews had improved its service significantly.

Mark McGeown, chief executive, said: "When we started, the emphasis was on getting patients to hospital as quickly as possible, now it is about getting the right treatment to them as quickly as we can.

"Our 15,000th mission was a great example of that.

"The patient was treated at the scene by our doctor-led crews, which became full-time last year, before he was transferred to a dedicated trauma unit."

Road accidents accounted for 36% of the air ambulance's call outs in the past year.

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