Capital Air Ambulance has utilised RAF Odiham airfield for a non-COVID urgent patient transfer from Guernsey to mainland UK as part of its support to an ongoing request for Military Aid to Civil Authorities (MACA).
Capital’s King Air aircraft landed at RAF Odiham to be met by a road ambulance to transfer a patient to University Hospital Southampton (UHS) for critical care.
The use of RAF Odiham is as an assured alternate airfield for use by Capital Air Ambulance who provide aeromedical evacuation services for the Channel Islands.
The MACA request was submitted by the Governments of Jersey and Guernsey to use RAF Odiham as the secondary airfield to Southampton Airport for medical evacuation movements.
Southampton Airport (SOU) is operating a limited schedule due to the contraction of air travel due to COVID-19 and therefore, any urgent aeromedical evacuations outside of the SOU opening times requires a suitable airfield near to Southampton Hospital.
RAF Odiham was selected due to proximity to UHS and the ability to open the airfield 24/7 with only 4 hours’ notice.
Whilst this is a simple task for RAF Odiham, the assurance of having a 24/7 landing location on mainland UK gives significant reassurance to the Governments and people of the Channel Islands.
RAF Odiham’s assistance to the Channel Islands is part of the MOD’s wider support to the Government’s response to COVID-19.