More Calls For Emergency Helicopter

Monday, 16 April 2018
More Portland people are being flown to specialist treatment from the Blue Ribbon Foundation Portland District Health Emergency Helipad.

So far this financial year till the end of January, 16 people have been airlifted out of Portland by the emergency helicopter service, up from 13 during the same time the previous financial year.

Urgent Care Centre Nurse Unit Manager Deb Tozer said most of the flights were cardiac patients who are transferred to Geelong.

Some trauma patients are also transferred to Melbourne and some critically ill patients have been rushed to Warrnambool Base Hospital.

In 2016-17 there were a total of 23 helicopter airlifts from Portland.

Ms Tozer said so far this financial year there had been a slight decrease in the number of patients leaving Portland on fixed wing aircraft, down from 31 to 28.

Ms Tozer said it's pleasing to see that local residents are more compliant with traffic signals when the emergency helicopter arrives and departs. The helicopter needs to hover across Bentinck Street from the Ploughed Field area to land on the helipad and vice versa on take-off.

The lights must be obeyed by motorists and pedestrians. Failing to stop could have serious repercussions with delays in the helicopter take-off, leading to potential delays in the patient transfer, Ms Tozer said.

The helipad is dedicated as a permanent police memorial in memory of Senior Constable Mark Bateman who died with his partner Senior Constable Fiona Robinson in 2000 when their divisional van was involved in a crash while answering a priority one call at Northcote.

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