Thames Valley Air Ambulance has today launched its first ever urgent appeal in response to a predicted £1 million shortfall in fundraising income because of coronavirus.

The charity is still providing its usual critical care service - and has even helped at major incidents in Bucks this week - but has also deployed its paramedics and doctors to serve alongside NHS colleagues within the region in response to pandemic.

TVAA says the initial estimate of a £1 million funding black hole could be a "significant understatement" - but is still 10 per cent of the charity's annual income.

The predicted loss is because of community and business fundraising events being cancelled.

Because of this, the air ambulance is pleading with members of the public to donate if they can to help keep its vital services running.

Neil Harman, Thames Valley Air Ambulance's director of fundraising said: “We are truly in an unprecedented situation. Never before in our history have we anticipated such a large loss in fundraising over such a short period.

"We do want to reassure the public, that whatever the response to our appeal, we will continue to provide lifesaving care in the immediate future and be on hand to back-up the NHS in our efforts to tackle the pandemic.

"We are calling on those that can give, to back us at this time and help us secure our service well into the future.”

While continuing to provide a pre-hospital critical care service during the pandemic via its helicopter and critical care response car, the charity has also covered the staffing costs of its doctors and paramedics taking shifts within the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxfordshire, providing a new inter-hospital transfer service for Covid-19 patients, and the extra training required for the new roles.

In the last financial year, the number of times Thames Valley Air Ambulance were dispatched to patients in need increased by more than 110 per cent.

In total, the charity’s teams of paramedics, doctors and pilots were called out to 2,670 patients across the Bucks, Berkshire, Oxfordshire region.

Donate now at