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Sunday, June 10, 2007

New Medical Helicopter Provider For Robert Packer Hospital


New copter to service Packer

June 10, 2007 Star-Gazette

A new community-based air medical service has been formed between Robert Packer Hospital and the Air Methods Corp.The goal for establishing the new program was to continue to offer high-quality critical care transport services to the region, according to a press release.

Air Methods, the world's largest air medical company, has an impressive track record of partnering with health care providers to form successful community-based air medical programs, the press release states.

Air Methods began its service June 1 and will use the hospital's facilities and hangar.The new program is called Guthrie Air and uses a medically dedicated helicopter that is in operation 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This new program follows nearly four years of service to the region by STAT MedEvac.

Every effort will be made to ensure that the change is seamless and transparent to customers, the press release states.Guthrie Air uses the same airframe, a Eurocopter EC-135, as STAT MedEvac did.Some members of the former STAT crew are staying on with the new Guthrie Air program as employees of Air Methods.

The helicopter is staffed by an EMS pilot, a critical care flight nurse and a specially trained flight paramedic.The base has a full-time, FAA-certified mechanic on duty for regular and scheduled maintenance.The aircraft will operate on an Air Methods certificate and will be managed by Air Methods.

Guthrie Air may be contacted through the Guthrie Communications Center, at Robert Packer Hospital, at (800) 535-0911.This number may be used for any service that requires air medical transport -- including inter-facility patient transfers and on-scene responses.

Air Methods will dispatch the helicopter, with medical command provided by Robert Packer Hospital Emergency Department physicians.

For information or to schedule a landing zone safety class, contact Marty Delaney, Air Methods/Guthrie air program director, at (570) 882-4919.

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