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After landing on the BWH helipad, MedFlight staff meet BWH Patient Transport Services staff to bring a patient into the ED.
When staff in the BWH Emergency Department receive word of an impending arrival via Boston MedFlight, they know that the patient likely will be critically ill, but also that he or she has received outstanding care in the capable hands of top-notch flight nurses and paramedics before reaching the ED.
“MedFlight is in many ways a mobile ICU, and it delivers phenomenal care to our patients across New England,” said Ron Walls, MD, chair of Emergency Medicine. “It truly is a first class service that we are honored to be part of.”
BWH and MedFlight, along with Children’s Hospital, celebrated 25 years of the partnership between MedFlight and a consortium of Boston hospitals, including BWH, with an event on the BWH helipad last week.
“The patients who use MedFlight are those who need us the most,” said Kate Walsh, BWH’s chief operating officer. “We are celebrating 25 years of MedFlight and their incredible safety record.”
The newest member of the MedFlight family offers the latest advances in safety. The Sikorsky S-76 C++ twin engine helicopter is the world’s first S-76 EMS aircraft with night vision goggle capability, a traffic collision avoidance system and single pilot IFR (instrument flight rules). The helicopter, which travels up to 175 miles per hour, is big enough to transport two patients and a full MedFlight crew.
“We also can fit two transport team members from the hospitals, or someone in training for MedFlight because of the amount of space,” said Bill Cyr, RN, EMT-P, a MedFlight flight nurse, who also has extensive experience as a nurse in the BWH ED.
Since the Sikorsky went into service in March, it has delivered hundreds of critical patients from throughout New England to Boston hospitals for excellent care.
“What makes us tremendously proud is that when a patient’s life is on the line and the clock is ticking, we give them the opportunity to get to you so that you can make a difference,” said MedFlight CEO and Medical Director Suzanne Wedel, MD.
Chief Information Officer Sue Schade, left, takes a look inside MedFlight's newest helicopter as Bill Cyr of MedFlight points out the top-notch safety features it offers.