Ogden Regional Medcial Center, U Hospital Partner to Offer Air Ambulance Service to Northern Utah

Ogden Regional Medcial Center, U Hospital Partner to Offer Air Ambulance Service to Northern Utah

Apr 13, 2005 6:00 PM

Ogden Regional Medical Center and University of Utah Hospital's AirMed program will partner to provide emergency air ambulance services to northern Utah beginning April 15.

AirMed is considered a p--remier air ambulance service and completes about 1,800 missions annually in Utah and the Intermountain West. The program serves the largest geographical area of any academic medical center, with helicopters currently stationed at Salt Lake City, Park City, and Orem.

"This joint program, while mutually beneficial to Ogden Regional Medical Center and AirMed, is also important to our community because it will provide greater benefit and more choices to patients and emergency medical services personnel," said Steven B. Bateman, chief executive officer at Ogden Regional.

"Every second counts when it comes to transporting critically ill patients to a qualified trauma center," said Ken Matthews, R.N., AirMed director and chief flight nurse. "AirMed's service will put Utah's outlying northern communities within minutes of care that has, until now, required long ambulance rides."

As part of the expanded service, AirMed will provide a new Bell 407 helicopter and flight crew, consisting of a pilot, flight nurse, and paramedic. The new helicopter carries one patient, reaches speeds up to 140 mph, and is designed to fly at high altitudes.

Matthews anticipates the Ogden-based team will log about 20 flights a month between scene flights and inter-hospital transfers. The new helicopter will be stationed daily at Ogden Regional during peak service hours*10 a.m.-10 p.m. AirMed's fleet includes four helicopters and two fixed-wing airplanes.

Ogden Regional is the first hospital in northern Utah to have its Level II Trauma Center verified by the American College of Surgeons. "Such verification is the highest level of achievement for hospital-based trauma programs, and is evidence of Ogden Regional's commitment to high standards of care for trauma patients," Bateman said.

The Ogden Regional trauma center provides 24-hour immediate coverage by general surgeons, orthopedic surgeons, neurosurgeons, cardiothoracic surgeons, anesthesiologists, emergency medicine physicians, radiologists, and critical care physicians.

According to Bateman, the hospital's program is committed to trauma prevention, continuing education of the trauma team members, and improved trauma care through comprehensive and interdisciplinary quality assessment.

Ogden Regional will provide the infrastructure for AirMed based at the hospital, Bateman said. The hospital is investing approximately $400,000 to significantly upgrade its heliport facilities. This upgrade is the first phase of a comprehensive expansion project for the Ogden Regional Emergency Department.

Permanent heliport facilities at Ogden Regional are targeted for completion by August 2005.

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