Olympics doctor and Nato medical adviser join East Anglian Air Ambulance

A leading doctor from the London Olympics and Nato's chief medical adviser in the UK have started work for a lifesaving charity.

The two appointments at the East Anglian Air Ambulance comes as the organisation prepares to start night flying operations from next month.

David Zideman, who was clinical lead for emergency medical services for the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games, takes up the role of director of clinical operations at the charity.

Dr Zideman, who is also honorary physician to the Queen, has been a consultant anaesthetist at the Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, since 1980.

The air ambulance has also announced that Timothy Hodgetts, a serving Colonel in the British Army, will become director of clinical quality and development.

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Prof Hodgetts, who is also chief medical adviser at Nato's UK headquarters will increase the medical scope and capability of the charity. He has developed clinical advances in pre-hospital and emergency care in the Armed Services was made CBE in 2009 for his contribution to combat casualty care development and was awarded the Danish Defence Medal in 2010 for clinical leadership of a multinational field hospital in Afghanistan.

The East Anglian Air Ambulance, which operates two dedicated air ambulances, took delivery of a new night-capable helicopter in September and hopes, subject to the necessary approvals from the Civil Aviation Authority, to be able to start saving lives at night from next month.

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Dr Zideman said: 'As a doctor already flying missions with the EAAA I am very impressed with the professional approach and clinical excellence that I see in EAAA. I am honoured to be working for the charity in this important new role.'

Professor Hodgetts added that he was looking forward to his new role.

'This is a fantastic opportunity for me to further develop the advances we have made in the areas of combat to improve the care and treatment that we are able to offer to local people who experience a medical emergency. I am really looking forward to working with the skilled and very talented people at EAAA,' he said.

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