A new air ambulance service has taken off in the North Country. LifeNet launched six months ago, providing a long-awaited medical service to communities across the region. YNN’s Carmella Mataloni tells us about the program's early success and whether funding is expected to be an issue again in the future.
WATERTOWN, N.Y. -- When it comes to emergency situations, time can save lives and that's exactly what the new air transport operation in the North Country provides.
“That’s the purpose for having that air ambulance because it lets you get that golden hour to make sure the patient reaches that trauma level care in time,” said Denise Young.
LifeNet launched this June, five years after the last air ambulance service left the region. With its return, trauma patients are able to get the medical attention they need in half the time.
“Anyone who requires advanced level medical care during transport as well as rapid transport to definitive medical location,” said Ann Smith, LifeNet Regional Business Development Manager.
With its headquarters located in Watertown, health officials say they averaged 22 calls per month.
“We have a fairly significant community here now, you know, we are growing and the population capacity allowed air methods to bring in an ambulance and have a good business case for that,” said Young.
The level of care that each patient receives while being transported in these helicopters is why officials say this program is a great asset to have back in the area.
“The success is a reflection of the true needs of an air medical company in the area, as well as the staff, our professional and dedicated staff, that have made it a success and our company’s commitment to patient care and safety,” said Smith.
With only six months of data, it is too soon to tell exact numbers of business, but officials say at this point, they are meeting their projected values.