Island Air Ambulance Topic at Rotary Meeting

Friday, May 26, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m., Eastsound Fire Station

— from Jeanne McPherson for Orcas Rotary —

Over the last 20 years, Island Air has flown more than 2,300 medical evacuation missions to hospitals on the mainland. In addition to their medically-configured Cessna Caravan, Island Air has a pilot, flight nurse, and a flight paramedic or EMT ready to respond 24/7.

We invite you to join us to learn about this important island service and tour a medically-equipped Cessna after the meeting.

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Island Air Ambulance Topic at Rotary Meeting — 5 Comments

  1. Why should we support Island Air’s operation when we already have the excellent MedFlight option?

  2. Bob, There are times that Airlift Northwest can’t fly due to weather and Island Air can and vice versa. There are times when an Airlift Northwest aircraft isn’t available, or is a long time out. If you are suffering from a heart attack when there is a high demand for Airlift Northwest, would you rather wait a couple of hours for an Airlift Northwest aircraft to become available, or 30 minutes for an Island Air flight if it is available?

    Living on an island we have limited means of getting ourselves to a hospital in an emergency. For less that the cost of a ferry ticket per year you can provide another emergency transportation option. For me? I’ll take every option I can get if it means that I have rapid affordable access to emergency transport off island.

  3. I highly recommend that every household have a membership with Airlift Northwest and Island Air. I understand The choice of air ambulance is made by the first responders/medical director, not the patient, although the patient may be consulted. Another point is that Island Air is based in Friday Harbor, a short distance from Eastsound, and if you are at the hospital in Friday Harbor and need more advanced care, Island Air can get you to the mainland hospitals in Bellingham, or Everett or Seattle, depending on weather and service needed.

  4. When my husband had to be evacuated in a blizzard last February, Airlift NW could not fly and neither could the Navy’s helicopters. When the rotors are iced up, they can’t do it. Then during a tiny short lull in the storm we got the call to take Mike to the Eastsound airport fast. The plane from Friday Harbor was already in the air. They are my heroes. We need them.

  5. There are also plenty of times when the helicopters are already in service on other emergencies. Having both AirLift and Island Air gives you more options if needed.