Worcestershire Royal Hospital helipad gets go-ahead

Planners give green light to life-saving £1.24m development

An artist's impression shows how the new state-of-the-art raised helipad will look

Work is set to begin on a new state-of-the-art £1.24m helipad at Worcestershire Royal Hospital, following the go-ahead from planners this week.

The new raised helipad, which will be situated next to Worcestershire Oncology Centre, will be closer to the Accident and Emergency department, enabling paramedics to transfer critically-ill patients into the department more quickly using electric trolleys instead of an ambulance.

Relocating the helipad from its current location on land adjacent to the staff carpark will also help to ease traffic congestion, as cars driving around the site will not be disrupted when the air ambulance lands and takes off.

Additional car parking will also be created – both on land vacated by the current helipad, and underneath the new raised platform.

Work on the helipad, which is expected to be completed within 12 months, has been funded by the HELP Appeal, which aims to provide helipads at all trauma centres and major A&E hospitals across the country.

Michelle McKay, chief executive of Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We are delighted that we’ve got the go ahead for a new helipad and we would like to thank the HELP Appeal which is enabling this work to be carried out.

“The plan has always been to relocate the helipad closer to A&E, meaning patients arriving by air ambulance can be transferred into the department as quickly and easily as possible to receive emergency treatment once they have landed on site.”

Michelle McKay, chief executive of Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust; Robert Bertram, chief executive of the HELP Appeal; and James Longmore, director of asset management and ICT and WAHT, overlooking the new helipad site

Robert Bertram, chief executive of the HELP Appeal, added: “Helipads save time and save lives. It’s as simple as that.

“After learning that the Worcestershire Royal Hospital could build a helipad closer to its emergency department, reducing the time it takes to transfer a critically-ill patient to the specialist care they urgently need, we wanted to make it happen for them as quickly as possible, so we agreed to cover the entire cost.

“It’s fantastic that they have been given permission to start on this essential build, which will make a huge difference to the lives of patients.”