US-based non-profit air medical transport service Life Flight Network (LFN) recently announced that it would soon be opening a base at Idaho’s Rexburg-Madison County Airport. The base should begin 24/7 operations in February, and it is hoped that having a dedicated aircraft based in Rexburg will dramatically reduce transfer times from Idaho’s medical facilities, such as Madison Memorial Hospital and Steele Memorial Medical Center, and nearby facilities such as St John’s Medical Center in Wyoming. LFN is reportedly working hard to respond to recent Idaho legislation in the area of Time Sensitive Emergencies; its new helicopter will also serve tourists visiting Yellowstone National Park.
“We’re fortunate so many hospitals and EMS agencies are supportive of this expansion,” said Mike Weimer, LFN’s regional director. “These partnerships are extremely important to our success.
Ann Loyola, director of PR and marketing with Teton Valley Health Care Inc., meanwhile, said that ‘a Rexburg-based Life Flight Network helicopter is positive news for our region’. “Communities benefit whenever there’s an opportunity to reduce the response time for a medical emergency,” she added.
It is also hoped that the helicopter will add $1.2 million to the local economy, as the base will be fully staffed with flight nurses, paramedics, pilots and mechanics.