UW Health Statement on Med Flight Report

Media Inquiries
MADISON - The National Transportation Safety Board ( NTSB) this morning released a series of documents related to the May crash of one of UW Health's Med Flight helicopters.
Although the NTSB review process is far from complete, UW Health and Med Flight leadership are reviewing all of the reports in detail. We concur with the many comments from physicians, nurses and pilots that Med Flight has been a leader in both the level of medical care provided and the precise attention to maintenance and training.

This series of documents does not, however, identify a probable cause of the crash. We hope that the final report to be released in the coming months will shed more light on that issue.

The Med Flight crash was a deeply traumatic event for the entire UW Health family, most particularly those who were part of the Med Flight operation. All pilots and dispatchers and most flight nurses and physicians have stayed with the program, but a smaller number have opted not to fly – some citing family considerations. 

As expected, the number of flights in calendar year 2008 was fewer than in the previous year by approximately 300. However, despite the setback that resulted in Med Flight not operating for approximately two weeks after the crash, the program still reported 1078 flights for calendar year 2008.
Med Flight has flown a total of 745 flights from the time of service resumption to today. If present trends continue, the Med Flight air service will be very close to the number of flights logged in the year immediately before the May crash.

UW Health is well aware that this tragic accident continues to be of interest both to our own employees and to the public. Please be assured that every effort will be made to keep you informed of results from the NTSB investigation as it progresses.

Date Published: 04/30/2009

News tag(s):  medflight

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