Life Flight Fact Sheet About Memorial Hermann Life Flight Memorial
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Life Flight Fact Sheet About Memorial Hermann Life Flight Memorial Hermann Life Flight is committed to providing safe, rapid, quality and cost effective air medical transport to everyone in need regardless of their ability to pay. Life Flight helicopters operate as airborne trauma centers with the same types of equipment and medicines found in a major trauma center. Because Memorial Hermann Life Flight is Houston’s only hospital-based air ambulance program, it offers a continuum of care, from the time the rescue call comes in to the time the patient goes home. Life Flight is licensed by the Texas Department of Health as an Air Ambulance and is the only program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems (CAMTS) in the area. The program has a national imprint as it has been: • Instrumental in training NASA astronauts for possible emergencies; • One of the first air medical programs in the country to participate in a joint research project with the Department of Defense; and • Recognized as one of the 10 air medical programs in the U.S. selected for the North American Aero Safety Network Pilot Program. History Memorial Hermann Life Flight was founded in 1976 and is led by its first and only medical director, Dr. James “Red” Duke. Memorial Hermann Life Flight was the first air ambulance program to operate in Texas, the second in the U.S. and has completed more than 110,000 missions since inception. Facts • With four helicopters flying more than 3,000 missions every year, Life Flight is the busiest air medical program in the U.S. • Memorial Hermann – Texas Medical Center is one of only two Level One trauma centers in Houston and is the only one that provides air medical service and is a JACHO Accredited Stroke Center. • Life Flight responds to calls within a 150-mile radius from the Texas Medical Center including Galveston, Lake Charles, Palestine, Seguin, and Victoria, TX. Counties with the largest number of Life Flight missions include (in order) Harris, Brazoria, Fort Bend, Trauma Liberty, and Montgomery. • Life Flight responds to an average of 8 calls a Medical Emergencies day, and one in every four Life Flight missions (stroke, heart attack, etc…) involves a child. Newborns • 74% of Life Flight calls are trauma patients. Burn Patients 13% are medical emergencies (stroke, heart attack). 8% are newborns. 3% are burn patients and 2% are high-risk OB patients. The People • The average tenure of a Life Flight trauma team member is 17 years, and there is a long waiting list for vacancies. The team consists of highly trained and skilled pilots, registered nurses, and paramedics who operate under an advanced scope of practice. They can perform surgical interventions typically reserved for physician practice. • Life Flight’s 16 pilots average more than 5,000 hours of helicopter flight experience each. • Life Flight’s Communications Center is staffed by communications specialists who are also licensed/certified paramedics. • Life Flight clinical team members participate in on-going training, including skills lab, five different specialty ICU rotations, annual safety classes and average 25-hours of aviation specific flight training. The Future of Life Flight • Money raised for the Life Flight campaign will be used to purchase six new Life Flight helicopters – four to replace the existing fleet (which averages 17 years old), plus two additional helicopters. Of the two new helicopters, one will be dedicated to pediatric and obstetric cases and one will service Houston’s East side including the Port of Houston, the Ship Channel, and the surrounding communities. • With the new fleet of helicopters, Life Flight anticipates being able to improve response time from an average of 44 to 30 minutes, or 33 percent faster. • The new helicopters will be faster and technologically superior. They are quieter, have GPS landing systems, and have the latest communication equipment. They can transmit video, EKG information, stats, and more to the ER so doctors on the ground know what to expect and can prescribe drugs or make a diagnosis before the helicopter lands. • The new helicopters will have cabins that are 25 percent larger with better lighting and more seating. They will also be 25 percent more fuel efficient than the current fleet, offering an average fuel savings of $37,000 per aircraft per year. • The new helicopters will be designed specifically for medical transport, with dual engines for added safety and a double-load capacity from the rear so that two patients can be transported at once. • There will be a significant reduction of cost for maintenance within the first year of the acquisition of new aircraft. • The new helicopters will continue to be used for training and community outreach/education. More than 1,120 hours of community education are offered annually to various groups and include car seat safety courses, bike safety and pool safety for elementary school children, and programs in area high schools to educate teens on the consequences of drinking and driving.