Readers Respond

Thursday, September 1, 2005

Letter to the Pilot

Helicopter ambulance

is a necessity


I chose to return to this beautiful community 17 years ago. I moved my family from a city where we had immediate access to the highest quality health care in the United States. We purchased a home 2 blocks from the Buena Vista Regional Medical Center campus. I remember when AirCare/LifeFlight helicopters routinely landed in the small north parking lot of the hospital. I could hear the helecopter coming and going. When I heard or was awakened by the sounds created by these flying ambulances my thoughts and prayers would silently go out to someone unkown.

Four years ago my father had an accident. He fell in the parking lot of his apartment complex directly across the street from BVRMC. He was taken by ambulance to the BVRMC Emergency Room where the staff and physicians quickly assessed that my father had suffered a severe brain injury. His condition was deteriorating by the minute and he needed to be transferred to a larger facility that had the ability to deal with this type of trauma. The Helicopter Ambulance was summonded. Our BVRMC ambulance crew went to the airport to meet the helicopter and brought the medical crew back to our hospital. My father was taken by ground ambulance to the Storm Lake airport where he was transferred to the Air Ambulance and flown to Mercy Medical Center in Sioux City. The accident took my father's life.

I will never know if the minutes wasted bringing the medical crew from the airport to BVRMC and the trip back to the airport killed my dad. Would he still be alive today to see his granddaughter in college and his grandson play ball if the Helicopter had landed directly at our Medical Center? I am certain that I don't want anyone else to have to ask this question.

The new area that BVRMC has created to allow the Air Ambulance to have immediate access to the patient is a necessity. We should not let the minor and infrequent inconvenience of a few deprive the community of this service.

- Keith Germann & Family, Storm Lake