Due to many calls from citizens, health institutions and members of the civil defense of the Republic of Srpska, initiative was created to establish a system of air medical transport, as a systematic and organized way of taking care of patients in the health care system of the Republic of Srpska.
As part of the initiative, in 2014 an agreement was signed between the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of the Republic of Srpska and the Helicopter service which defines operations of air medical transport for the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of the Republic of Srpska, with the aim of improving the health care system.
As a prerequisite for performing this type of operations, Helicopter service of RS has expanded its initial fleet with one helicopter Bell 206 Jet Ranger, equipped with certified medical equipment and devices that provide safe and secure transport of patients to health care facilities.
HOW IS AIR MEDICAL TRANSPORT ORGANIZED
The system of air medical transport involves cooperation and coordination between the Helicopter service of RS, the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, University Clinic Center of Banja Luka and teams of health care institutions.
Above mentioned institutions have organized every day on-duty teams to support and coordinate Air medical transport system in order to function without obstructions.
The system works on the 365/7/24 principle and allows the crew of Helicopter service to answer every call and take off within 15 minutes, which is of great importance in cases of life endangerment of patients when time is enemy and when is very important for the patients to be transported in the shortest possible time (a.k.a. “golden hour”).
Important role is played by teams that were organized in all health care facilities in the Republic of Srpska. The decision for air medical transport is made by team leaders after assessing the health status of the patient.
If there is a need for emergency air transport, team leaders in the health care institution where the patient is hospitalized, will undertake all activities required for medical helicopter transport or contact the coordinator of Air medical transport.
Team leaders are obligated to provide all necessary medical records of the patient on a special form with basic information about the patient, its current clinical status and the patient’s ability to withstand transport by air in an unpressurized aircraft.
Air medical transport is performed with the obligatory presence of medical personnel and only in VFR conditions (flight operations under visible conditions and above the prescribed weather minima for crew/passengers and aircraft).