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19 December 2011

Training for hospital crews helps air ambulance success

Air ambulances play a vital role in medical evacuation, repatriation services and transplant transport services throughout the world. As such, both the flight crew and medical aircrew training programs are extensive.

However it is also important to ensure that the medical teams on the ground are well trained in unloading an air ambulance. With seconds being critical to so many of the patients relying on the services, it is important there are no delays when transferring from helipad to clinical care unit.

Mindful of this, a December 12 2011 report focused on the training at the St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Minnesota.

Each year the medical centre, in association with their local service, the North Memorial Health Care service, prepare for emergencies as diverse as a multi-vehicle road traffic accident and the provision of care for a heart attack victim.

As well as the nurses and doctors giving treatment, other hospital staff are also involved. The event requires all safety, security and maintenance engineers to ensure the safety of everyone involved, and provide for realistic working conditions.

The training drill lasts an entire afternoon and covers all areas of the operation. From securing the landing zone to loading and unloading the aircraft, all bases are covered and practised.

It is clearly an event which the medical staff are eager to attend, highlighted by Amanda Syir, a trauma coordinator with St. Joseph’s, who said:

“…this offered a great opportunity. It’s important to get hands-on experience when it’s not (an) emergency.”

It is yet further insight into the immense amount of work and dedication medical professionals give to air ambulance services throughout the globe.