Emerg Med J 30:419-420 doi:10.1136/emermed-2011-200486
  • Short report

Characteristics of patients transported by an air ambulance critical care team

  1. Jonathan R Benger3
  1. 1Medical School, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
  2. 2Emergency Department, University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, Bristol, UK
  3. 3Academic Department of Emergency Care, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK
  1. Correspondence to Jacqueline Amber Catherall, Medical School, University of Bristol, 19 Hampton Road, Bristol BS6 6HW, UK; jacqueline.catherall{at}
  1. Contributors JAC conducted the data collection and analysis, and drafted and revised the paper. She is the guarantor. AB initiated the project, monitored data collection and revised the draft paper. JRB drafted and revised the paper.

  • Accepted 27 April 2012
  • Published Online First 29 May 2012


Background The aim of this study was to review patients conveyed by the Great Western Air Ambulance to its main receiving hospital.

Methods Retrospective data were collected for all patients transferred to Frenchay Hospital by the Great Western Air Ambulance between 1 June 2008 and 1 March 2010.

Results 115 patients were included in the review. Patients were conveyed up to 85 km, 79% bypassing the closest emergency department (ED). 51% of these patients had major trauma and 35% were intubated at the scene. On arrival, the mean time to CT scan was 78 min, reduced to 63 min for those with a head injury. 16% of patients were discharged from the ED.

Conclusions This review provides an overview of the characteristics of patients transferred to a major receiving hospital by a prehospital critical care team.


  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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Among patients with minor TBI (GCS 13-15) getting CT scans ≥ 24 hours after injury, what proportion have a traumatic finding?


0.5% - 43% response rate
3% - 41% response rate
10% - 16% response rate

Related original article: PCT head imaging in patients with head injury who present after 24 h of injury: a retrospective cohort study

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