When the situation is medical trauma, speed is essential in getting trauma victims the care that they need, 10TV’s Tracy Townsend reported on Thursday.
MedFlight chopper medical crews transport more than 4,000 patients each year. Crews work around the clock every day.
A man who crashed near Riverside Drive and Home Road earlier in June was taken by MedFlight to Grant Medical Center.
Investigators said that the man crashed into the woods off of the side of the road, Townsend reported.
A quick MedFlight rescue was essential, because it was initially reported that the man was unconscious at the time of the crash.
“Normally, when somebody’s critically injured, if you get them somewhere within that golden hour, their chances of success and surviving are greatly enhanced,” Line Pilot Gary Fink said.
Fink, who has eight years Army MedEvac experience, said that his team takes full advantage of the “golden hour.”
Fink’s team is made up of a pilot, a flight nurse and flight paramedics.
MedFlight paramdedic Jim Parmenter said that his team is ready to go 24 hours a day, every day of the year, Townsend reported.
“You get to a certain point in your career where it’s a challenge, and basically you’re helping people, helping others in need,” Parmenter said.
Flight paramedics like Parmenter have experience with fire and emergency medical services. Flight nurses also have extensive critical care certifications and experience in cardiac and intensive care units as well as emergency departments, Townsend reported.
According to Dave Evans, a registered nurse on the MedFlight team, crews thrive on the fact that there is no routine day’s work.
“We have the speed for those MIs, their heart muscles, the speed for the strokes, so we’re not losing brain cells and we have the speed for trauma,” Evans said.
Fink said that his crew is ready whenever a call comes in.
“Everybody gets into the mode of, ‘OK, no more smoking and joking,’” Fink said. “We start focusing on the task at hand.”
Safety is a priority at MedFlight, Townsend reported.
Pilots work 12-hour shifts, and nurses and paramedics work 24-hour shifts.
All medical crews have completed requirements of the Commission of Accreditation of Medical transport Systems.
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