This year marks the 20th anniversary of the partnership of MedAire (Booth No. 775) and Gulfstream Aerospace (Booth No. 275), through which the Phoenix-based MedAire has been providing Gulfstream operators with medical equipment, medical training and 24/7 access to MedAire’s hospital-based MedLink Global Response Center. Gulfstream includes the MedAire package with the purchase of each new Gulfstream aircraft.
Bell 222, Aurora, Ill., Oct. 15, 2008–The Air Angels medical transport helicopter hit a 734-foot-tall radio station tower, killing all four people on board, including the commercial pilot, a flight paramedic, a flight nurse and the patient. The accident occurred at 11:58 p.m. in clear weather. The strobe lights on the tower were working before the helicopter hit, but their electrical wires were severed in the crash.
Bell 407, Huntsville, Texas, June 8, 2008–Four people–the pilot, flight nurse, flight paramedic and a patient–were killed when the EMS Bell 407 crashed in Sam Houston National Forest in night VMC. The Med 12 flight had picked up a patient at Huntsville Memorial Hospital and was en route to Herman Memorial Helipad in Houston.
The New Jersey State Police (NJSP) aviation unit this spring reached a milestone of successfully flying 25,000 accident-free medevac flights since the program began in 1969. The current NJSP fleet includes four Sikorsky S-76B aeromedical critical-care configured helicopters, which in 2002 transported 1,400 patients, conducted 70 search-and-rescue flights and performed 60 first-responder educational demonstration sessions.
In the last 10 years, the odds of facing an in-flight medical emergency haven’t changed much, but thanks to the development of aviation telemedicine, the odds of surviving such an event have gone up considerably.
Southwest Nebraska will receive its first-ever air ambulance in May–a Bell 407 operated by MedStar. Under current arrangements, hospitals or EMS agencies have to summon airborne services that are based nearly 100 miles away. The new flight service will be permanently based at McCook, Neb.
Deutsche Rettungsflugwacht e.V.–German Air Rescue (DRF), headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany, has been specializing in airborne emergency care and medical aid for more than 30 years. Founded by the Björn Steiger Foundation in 1972, DRF has become one of the leading air rescue services in Europe, providing both primary (emergency) and secondary (patient transport) rescue service from 32 bases of operations throughout the continent.
A call comes in to operations: a young American woman vacationing on a dive boat in the Caribbean is suffering from serious burns after a fire broke out on board the vessel. Her passport and all documents were lost in the accident, and she needs to be repatriated to the U.S. for medical attention–fast.