The number of Isle of Wight patients being airlifted to the mainland for emergency hospital treatment has dropped significantly.
A freedom of information request, submitted to the Isle of Wight NHS Trust, revealed the St Mary’s Hospital helipad was used 133 times in 2018/19, compared with 232 times in 2016/17 — a drop of 40 per cent.
A trust spokesperson said there was no specific reason for the decline.
Used 2-3 times per week
During the last year the helipad was used, on average, two to three times a week. In 2016/17, it was used four to five times a week.
Helipad usage continues to be split almost equally between the UK Coastguard and air ambulances.
Last year, 89 patients were taken to the Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth, 42 to Southampton General, one to Salisbury and one to the Royal Marsden.
The hospital helipad was unveiled in 2013 by the Duke of Kent and cost £1.45 million to build, £250,000 of which was provided by the HELP Appeal charity.