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Air Ambulance Services

Health written question – answered on 8th June 2011.

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Photo of Andrew Stephenson Andrew Stephenson Conservative, Pendle

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his policy is on support for air ambulance services.

Photo of Simon Burns Simon Burns The Minister of State, Department of Health

The Department recognises that air ambulances play an important role in delivering emergency care, especially in rural areas and where road access is a problem. The air ambulances that operate across the country provide an effective means of ensuring better and faster access to hospitals and of supporting transfers between hospitals.

However, the Department works on the basis that NHS services are best provided and managed by commissioners and providers locally, working closely with their clinicians and key partners, with central Government intervening only when there is a clear need for national action. We believe that the local national health service is in the best position to make decisions about pre-hospital care in each area, including the use and funding of air ambulances.

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