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Ireland Air Ambulance

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Ireland Air Ambulance

Old 16th Jun 2009, 11:53
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Ireland Air Ambulance

...and before you know what's happening......

The Northern Ireland public has donated £700,000 for a helicopter air ambulance which has yet to get off the ground.
Most of the money collected by the charity - 90% in its first year - has gone on wages and administration.
The health minister, Michael McGimpsey, said he was bemused as to why the money was being collected for something he believes there is no demand for.
The Ireland Air Ambulance Alpha 5 charity has an unusual genesis.
One of those who helped set it up, Mark Sellers, freely admits the idea was hatched during an evening drinking with friends.
"I was involved with the London Air Ambulance until 2005," he said.
"I came over here for a wedding, got drunk and was asked to bring an air ambulance here as it's the only place in the UK that does not have one."
Since then, the fund-raising arm of the charity has taken off.
Charities are a multi-million pound business and the Ireland Air Ambulance (IAA) is one of the fastest growing in Northern Ireland.



Full story here
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Old 18th Jun 2009, 07:22
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Statement Issued on behalf of the Ireland Air Ambulance



16 June 2009



Dr Gwyn Beattie MB BCh Bao MRCS, Clinical Director at Ireland Air Ambulance (IAA) said:


“IAA has always been completely transparent about all aspects of its operations and publishes its audited financial results on its website.




“As the only region in the UK without Air Ambulance cover we continue to find great support for our plans to provide a service for the region.


“Like any charity or organisation, we anticipated that start-up costs in the first trading years would be high.


“In our first year, 90% of income was spent on operational costs such as salaries, premises, travel expenses, professional fees. In the last three months this figure has been reduced to 68% and we expect it to fall much further still in coming years.


“IAA receives no other funding outside public donations and collects a large proportion of its funds from some 13,000 collection boxes dispersed throughout the region. The regular collection, counting and banking of these boxes requires considerable manpower.


“I would like to thank all our fundraisers, volunteers and other stakeholders for their work to date and assure them that the vision of the IAA will soon become a reality.


“We envisage signing a lease deal with a helicopter firm in the coming weeks and will continue our negotiations with the NI Ambulance Service and health officials to ensure the integration of the IAA with emergency planning procedures.


“As a surgeon, working and living in Northern Ireland I am confident that our continuing fundraising and support from the community will see the air ambulance soon begin operating in the region.”
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Old 18th Jun 2009, 07:38
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17 June 2009


Dr Gwyn Beattie MB BCh Bao MRCS, Clinical Director at Ireland Air Ambulance (IAA) said:



"Over the past number of days Ireland Air Ambulance has been contacting its stakeholders to underline its continued commitment to securing the service for the region and explaining that the high start-up costs involved in establishing a charity are not unusual.



"This was confirmed by the charities commission for Northern Ireland who yesterday confirmed that "...a charity may spend more on its set-up than it will do in later stages of its development and operation."



"Ireland Air Ambulance is in the process of appointing external consultants to review the operations of the charity and ensure the business model going forward is robust and best serves our aim of providing an air ambulance to serve the people. "



Ends

For further information please contact:
Stephen Smith, Stakeholder Communications, Tel: 02890 339949
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Old 18th Jun 2009, 15:16
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Family wants Air Ambulance money back

BBC NEWS | UK | Northern Ireland | Family wants ambulance money back

Family wants ambulance money back


The charity released a fresh statement on Wednesday afternoon


A County Armagh couple who raised £65,000 for the Ireland Air Ambulance (IAA) in memory of their dead son say they want the money returned to them.
This is until they are satisfied with how the charity is spending its money.
Peter and Helen Fearon said they were "very disappointed" to learn that the charity spent 90% of its donations in its first year on wages and overheads.
The charity has not said whether or not it is prepared to give back the money raised by the Fearons from Drumintee.
"Air Ambulance has been contacting its stakeholders to underline its continued commitment to securing the service for the region and explaining that the high start-up costs involved in establishing a charity are not unusual," said Dr Gwyn Beattie, clinical director at IAA on Wednesday afternoon.
"This was confirmed by the Charities Commission for Northern Ireland who yesterday confirmed that a 'charity may spend more on its set-up than it will do in later stages of its development and operation'.
"This afternoon Ireland Air Ambulance spoke with Peter and Helen Fearon who are generous benefactors to the charity and offered to meet them to discuss their concerns.
"Ireland Air Ambulance is in the process of appointing external consultants to review the operations of the charity and ensure the business model going forward is robust and best serves our aim of providing an air ambulance to serve the people."
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Old 18th Jun 2009, 15:46
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yeah.. bit of a public relations problem.
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Old 18th Jun 2009, 20:50
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was asked to bring an air ambulance here as it's the only place in the UK that does not have one
Top marks for research then. On a less sarcastic note, how much genuine objective research is done before an AA service is set up as opposed to raising enthusiastic support and subsequently justifying the operation? Don't jump on this as an AA knocking post, some areas have a much more apparent need for a dedicated service whereas others have both AA and PAOC units yet could easily combine as per the police HEMS units. Or is it more about emergency service managements being unable to work together?
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Old 6th Jul 2009, 01:52
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Angry Ireland Air Ambulance Investigated

News report that the Aviation Director of the Ireland Air Ambulance has resigned due to stress amid reports of bad accounting and finances. They've reportedly spent 90% of £900,000 donated on wages and admin.

Since when has refuse collector been a pre-requisite for the posotion Aviation Director of a charity.

BBC - BBC Newsline - Air ambulance

Guess Northern Ireland won't be getting an Air Ambulance.
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Old 6th Jul 2009, 03:24
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Guys, from what I can tell here, there are TWO COMPLETELY SEPARATE AIR AMBULANCE CHARITIES INVOLVED HERE, AND ONE IS BEING BLAMED FOR THE OTHER!

One is the Ireland Air Ambulance, which was to be based in Northern Ireland, and is currently involved in an expenses controversy
Ireland Air Ambulance | Home

The other is the ALL Ireland Air Ambulance, which is a Southern Ireland based charity, and is not involved in any way, shape, or form with the above!
All Ireland Air Ambulance - Home

I know it's easy for the two to get mixed up as the only difference between them at first glance is the word "ALL", but we should really be careful about pointing the finger at the wrong people.

THE ALL Ireland Air Ambulance has not been involved in any of the current controversy whatsoever. Mods should remove the above posts that seems to mix up the two charities, and explain with a sticky perhaps? This could really damage the All Ireland Air Ambulance charity unless clarified.

Last edited by holybejaysus; 6th Jul 2009 at 03:42.
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Old 6th Jul 2009, 06:06
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THE ALL Ireland Air Ambulance has not been involved in any of the current controversy whatsoever. Mods should remove the above posts that seems to mix up the two charities
Done: thanks for pointing out the difference
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Old 6th Jul 2009, 12:20
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Holybejaysus, I agree, the charity in the ROI (AIAA) has nothing to do with the charity in the North, Alpha 5 (IAA).

The AIAA has contracted with Bond helicopters, has a chairman, a full board of trustees and is transparent. Three aircraft are forecasted for the whole of Ireland. It’s all on their web-site.

The Alpha 5 (IAA) is riddled with controversy; it’s spent 90% of the publics’ donations on admin and wages. The media are investigating it and people are asking for their money back.

Ireland air ambulance, sorry but me thinks I smell a rat!! Your Aviation Director was a refuse collector; your Ground Director has his wife as a trustee (see audit on IAA web-site) and your Clinical Director is now spokesman. As directors their all paid by the charity, who are appointed by the trustees who decide what they’re paid. Just ask the Ground Directors’ wife.

Fkelly, Air Ambulance is long overdue in Ireland (North and South). It’s a shame that one charity is in the media for all the wrong reasons. Judging by the public support and the amount raised, the people of Northern Ireland are fully behind this service. It’s a shame for the public and us pilots that the IAA (Alpha 5) service will not get off the ground.

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Old 12th Jul 2009, 02:06
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Hmmmmm, I smell something fishy...

Can anyone confirm knowing this chap? There is mention that 'having been involved with London HEMS' he now is establishing a similar service in NI. Has anyone heard of Gerry?

Also, is there a reference to the Aviation Director being once a Refuse Collector as I have searched their website and cannot find the link?

The Trustee Report from August 2008 states that they are one year ahead of schedule, meaning they are hoping to be airborne in June 2009.

Something definitely stinks here!


perhaps someone in the know from Sloanes could shine a light on it...

Last edited by Senior Pilot; 12th Jul 2009 at 04:46. Reason: embed YouTube link
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Old 12th Jul 2009, 03:05
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Can anyone confirm knowing this chap? There is mention that 'having been involved with London HEMS' he now is establishing a similar service in NI. Has anyone heard of Gerry?

Mr Jerry Carr (Alpha 5 Ireland Air Ambulance):
A long time ago, my friend worked with London air ambulance and he asked me to help them with an internal matter. I come from a computing background, so I was able to assist. I was invited to meet the medical crew and the aviation crew, and I was overwhelmed by the good work that they did.


source:
Northern Ireland Assembly HSSPS Committee moe
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Old 12th Jul 2009, 04:56
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incorrect picture

Why is there a picture of Yorkshire Air Ambulance MD902 on this thread ?
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Old 12th Jul 2009, 07:32
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Read the document, it's clear the people involved haven't got a clue where they are talking about, yet they managed to raise a lot of funds and pay themselfs nice salaries......
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Old 15th Jul 2009, 22:10
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I heard that the "Ireland Air Ambulance" helicopter simulator was at The Highland Games at Glenarm Castle this week. Looks like business as usual despite the recent controversy... Has anyone had a go on the sim?

Oh, and I also heard that the PSNI helicopter airlifted a casualty to hospital in Belfast after a road accident on Monday, one of only a handful of times they have done this sort of task, so perhaps there is more of a need for an Irish HEMS service than some think.

Last edited by Bladecrack; 15th Jul 2009 at 22:15. Reason: To add note
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Old 16th Jul 2009, 21:30
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why not get the Irish Coastguard to do it? their SAR aircraft have all the HEMS equipment needed already on board.
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Old 17th Jul 2009, 00:36
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SAR services (in the ROI) are provided by CHC Ireland on contract from the Irish government and have been contracted out for quite a few years now. Also I doubt the S61 is the best choice for the HEMS role. I believe two of the IAC AW139s can be configured for HEMS but this is not their primary role, and they do not provide coverage for N.Ireland anyway.
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Old 17th Jul 2009, 17:33
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Why is there a picture of Yorkshire Air Ambulance MD902 on this thread ?
Because it's a straight lift from the BBC story where the picture properties show it described as an "Air Ambulance - Generic"

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Old 16th Apr 2010, 18:08
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NI air ambulance charity 'grounded'

NI air ambulance charity 'grounded'

An air ambulance charity that collected more than £750,000 has been wound up without ever landing a helicopter.

It said it is reforming in another guise with new personnel and will continue to raise money.
The chief executive of the Charities Commission has welcomed the move.
Last year, a BBC investigation revealed that 90% of the money collected by the Ireland Air Ambulance Charity in its first year went on wages and overheads.
Its recent accounts show it has only £65,000 left out of almost £700,000 collected over the past two years.
It now says that the association known as Ireland Air Ambulance has been dissolved.

The existing trustees and some of the staff have been stood down and a new company has been formed which will retain the old name.
The chief executive of the Charities Commission, Frances McCandless, said the charity has changed from being an unincorporated organisation to being a company limited by guarantee, which she said is "a good thing."
"It means the organisation submits details of its directors and accounts to Companies House and they are available for public scrutiny.
"We have met over the past few months with Ireland Air Ambulance following concerns that had been raised by the media.
"We have given them advice and we have pointed out what would be best practice."

Dissolution
In the 12 months up until 2009, the accounts show the organisation raised £479,000, and spent £387,265 most of it on what are described as "charitable purposes." Most of this expenditure went on staff and fundraising.
Nick Taylor, a business advisor for the newly constituted charity said the association known as the Ireland Air Ambulance has gone through the formal process of dissolution.
Its existing trustees, director, and some employees have all stood down, he said.
According to Mr Taylor, the charity is now being run by a new board of eight directors drawn from the business community who want to move the aims of the charity forward.
A new interim chief executive has been appointed.
He said all the assets of the IAA will be transferred to a new company which will retain the name Ireland Air Ambulance.
He said he is unable to say how much this is likely to be, but it is thought its could be less than £65,000 pounds - a small fraction of the total money raised.
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Old 17th Apr 2010, 06:14
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How is it that no-one is going to prison for this fraud perpetrated on the NI populace?
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