University Hospitals’ medical helicopter program UH AirMed has established a day base at UH TriPoint Medical Center, one of the first programs to arrive in Lake County as a result of the integration of Lake Health into the UH system.
The additional base arrival provides Lake County and its surrounding communities access to potentially lifesaving air medical services, according to a news release. Lake Health officially became a member of UH in April.
“As part of the Lake Health and University Hospitals integration, we are committed to expanding services to meet the growing health care needs in the community and coordinating care with our EMS and fire departments,” Cynthia Moore-Hardy, president and CEO of Lake Health, said in a provided statement. “Together, we can strengthen the delivery of high-quality care close to home for our residents and patients, transporting them to the right place at the right time as safely and efficiently as possible.”
Lake Health provides 24/7 emergency services in Lake County at TriPoint Medical Center in Concord, Lake West Medical Center in Willoughby and the Madison Emergency Department, according to the release. UH also has nearby emergency departments at UH Richmond and UH Geauga medical centers.
UH AirMed’s twin-engine helicopters fly under a range of weather conditions to transport critically ill and injured patients to tertiary care, providing enhanced 24/7 access to verified trauma centers across UH.
UH operates a network of state-designated trauma centers in Northeast Ohio, including Level 1 regional trauma centers at UH Cleveland Medical Center and UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital.
UH also has Level 3 trauma centers at UH Geauga Medical Center, UH St. John Medical Center, Southwest General Health Center, UH Portage Medical Center, UH Parma Medical Center and a provisional Level 3 trauma center at UH Elyria Medical Center. Level 3 centers can provide life- and limb-saving resuscitative measures and stabilize patients with needs beyond their capabilities who can then be transferred to the Level 1 trauma center, according to the release.
“UH is always searching for appropriate ways to provide access for our patients, whether they’re traveling to or being treated within our health system across Northeast Ohio,” Eric Beck, UH chief operating officer, said in a provided statement. “This additional base will enhance our ability to offer the safest, most advanced life-saving air medical services for patients with time-sensitive health issues.”
PHI Air Medical, which provides all UH AirMed aviation services, maintains a dedicated crew of pilots, nurses and communications specialists at each base who are trained to respond to crises and are familiar with Northeast Ohio’s geography, according to the release, which notes that the teams “adhere to rigorous protocols to ensure optimal care quality and safety.”
UH is a member of the Northern Ohio Trauma System, which coordinates regional trauma care to patients in Cuyahoga County and throughout the seven-county region.