Air Ambulance Charity Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS) has enhanced its life-saving service with the introduction of Arterial Line Blood Pressure Monitoring. Now, KSS’s medical teams can obtain a patient’s blood pressure reading every heartbeat, rather than every two minutes, significantly speeding up how quickly they can respond to changes in order to improve patient outcomes.


This latest development from KSS is particularly critical for patients with head injuries, where accurate management of blood pressure can help to reduce secondary brain injury.


Arterial Line Blood Pressure Monitoring has been introduced as a result of experience gained by the KSS medical team whilst undertaking inter-hospital transfers over the last year and is delivered using KSS’s Tempus Pro Monitors, which are not available in a land ambulance. KSS has invested in additional equipment, including lines and cannulas, as well as staff training in order to offer this advanced blood pressure monitoring capability to patients.


David Welch, CEO, KSS said, “We continually look at evolving our service and pushing boundaries in order to save more lives and deliver the best possible outcomes to patients. The introduction of Arterial Line Blood Pressure Monitoring is a fantastic development to our service and I’d like to thank our incredible Service Delivery Team and award-winning Operational Support Team for helping to make this happen.”


Dr Duncan Bootland, Medical Director, KSS added: “This is a major enhancement in monitoring blood pressure more accurately. In patients with head injuries who need a general anaesthetic, controlling blood pressure is known to be important, and we also know that monitoring blood pressure with a blood pressure cuff is not perfectly accurate and is more difficult in the pre-hospital environment due to movement of the patient. Using arterial lines to monitor blood pressure is commonly done in critical illness in hospitals but is not widely done in pre-hospital care. This is a great example of KSS’s ongoing focus on improving patient care.”


David Wright, Operational Manager, KSS concluded: “This development has taken a great deal of careful planning and preparation across our Service Delivery Team. It is something that will play an important part in the care we provide to some patients, particularly those with head injuries.”


About Air Ambulance Charity Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS)

Operating out of Redhill Aerodrome and headquartered in Rochester, KSS provides world-leading pre-hospital emergency care whenever and wherever required to save lives and ensure the best possible patient outcomes. Its crews of pilots, doctors and paramedics responded to 3,051 incidents in 2021, the charity’s busiest year in its 32-year history. When the call comes KSS can reach any part of Kent, Surrey and Sussex in under 30 minutes, bringing the emergency room to the scene to deliver life-saving care.


KSS was the first Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) in the country to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In March 2020 KSS became the first HEMS to be rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission in all five of its inspection key lines of enquiry: safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led. In September 2020 KSS won the Charity Times Charity of the Year Award (income more than £10M) and in September 2021 KSS won Kent Charity of the Year and CEO David Welch was selected as Charity Times’ Charity Leader of the Year Award 2021.


Each year, the charity must raise £15.2M to operate its life-saving service. 86% of its total income is through the generosity of KSS’s supporters.

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