Helicopter Emergency Medical Service

1577 WordsDec 16, 20107 Pages
Helicopter Emergency Medical Service Air medical transport has only been used for the past 70 years. The first true air ambulance flight was during the Great War. A Serbian officer was transported from the battlefield to the hospital by plane. Air ambulance was being tested by different military organizations during the First World War. Schaefer Air services was the first United States air ambulance service, created in 1947. The Korean War was the big turning point for EMS helicopters. In 1950, the military was given authorization to use helicopters for medical purposes. These helicopters were used to evacuate injured patients from the battlefield during combat. The small helicopters were equipped with basket stretchers that were…show more content…
Each helicopter has its own transport team. The transport team may consist of a pilot, registered nurse or paramedic, and can include EMT’s and EMT-I’s. Some flight crews include a physician. Physicians on fight crews have posed a lot of controversy as to whether a physician as a crew member improves the outcome of the patient. Each crew member must undergo many education courses as well as hands on training before being employed by HEMS. Safety is the most important aspect to HEMS. Emergency medical helicopters have an alarming history of crashes. The National Transportation Safety Board conducted a study to determine the major causes of helicopter crashes. Important areas of flight risk are the pilots, the mechanics of the aircraft, crew training, maintenance, weather conditions, time of day, and landing sites. The study showed that poor weather conditions posed the greatest risk for helicopter crashes. Since, the study many improvements have been made to improve the crash rate. It has been said that the sole decision is set on the pilot as to whether it is safe enough to take the flight or not. The pilot must consider the weather conditions, aircraft maintainence, and crew readiness. Medical personnel cannot make the decision to take the call. Medical personnel should not tell the pilot the nature of the call, because this may deter the pilot’s judgment. Currently the Federal Aviation Administration is looking
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