STARS Air Ambulance, which is Manitoba’s contracted service provider of medical flights, broke a record for the month of July. In the past month, they completed a record number of flights with their crews responding to 95 emergencies. In 2016 of the same month, STARS Air Ambulance had completed 65 missions.
Spike in Emergencies During Summer
According to STARS’ base director Grant Therrien, their air ambulance crews often have to respond to emergency situations one after the other. Their crew would return to base from an incident only to refuel and respond to another incident. And every summer, they expect to see a spike in the number of emergencies because people spend more time outside and are at higher risk of getting into an accident.
Improved Response Times for Medical Flights by STARS
For the month of July, STARS saw 54 scene calls and 41 inter-facility calls as well as 40 medical emergencies and 25 trauma calls. Among these incidents were 25 vehicle crashes and five of them were involving ATVs.
Considering the number of medical flights STARS has had to respond to in July alone, they expect to see a total of about 700 calls throughout the year. This would be a significant increase from 2016, during which they responded to 619 calls.
And now that STARS has fully integrated their service within the province’s emergency response system, they have also seen a reduction in response times. This means they have been available for medical calls a lot more than before.
Additionally, their ability to use the helipad at Winnipeg’s Health Sciences Centre has helped them in reducing their response time significantly. The service provided by STARS has improved as well after their technicians were required to undergo more training.