Air ambulance crews getting busier with cardiac arrests top call out

Last month (April 2021) East Anglian Air Ambulance (EAAA) treated its highest number of patients for eight months, with cardiac arrests being the most common type of emergency in the region.

In the case of an out of hospital cardiac arrest, the most important part of the patient’s treatment is by-stander CPR and early use of defibrillator. There is approximately a 10% reduction in survival for every minute’s delay in providing defibrillation following a cardiac arrest. However, the chance of survival can be increased two-to-threefold by the immediate provision of bystander CPR. Unfortunately, in the UK, not enough people are trained and confident in delivering these skills. EAAA is passionate about changing this to help save more lives across East Anglia.

This summer EAAA is excited to be the benefiting charity of Chariots of Fire in Cambridge, with the funds raised going towards a £97,500 three-year project to train more people in Cambridgeshire in these life-saving skills. Chariots of Fire is the region’s longest running charitable relay race and is organised by Hewitsons Charitable Trust, the charity established and supported by Hewitsons LLP.

EAAA is passionate about improving the outcomes of the people they treat, therefore the charity is committed to training more people in activating the chain of survival before emergency services arrive. By taking part in Chariots of Fire this September, your team can help EAAA to save more lives by raising vital funds towards this project.

Critical Care Paramedic and CPR Trainer Mark Milsom said: “What many people are surprised to learn is that EAAA attend more cardiac arrests than any other type of emergency. Cardiac arrests can happen for a wide range of reasons, can happen anywhere, and can affect people of all ages. Sadly, 80% of cardiac arrests happen in the home. In these situations, CPR and the early use of a defibrillator can make an enormous difference to that person’s care. Through Chariots of Fire, we hope to be able to employ another trainer to help us bring our CPR and defibrillator training to many more people across Cambridgeshire.”

Team entries for Chariots of Fire are now open at

Teams of six will take it turns to follow a picturesque and unique 1.7-mile route through some of Cambridge’s historic city centre and two world renowned Cambridge University Colleges, over the Cam and along the Backs, before passing on the baton to the next runner at Queens’ Green. Tickets cost £150 per team and sponsorship is a suggested £50 per person to help EAAA deliver life-saving training.