Start! and Parkview Samaritan 20th Anniversary at Parkview Field

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Mayor Tom Henry walked a treadmill at the TinCaps game on September 3, 2009, at Parkview Field.

This was to promote health awareness and a program by Parkview Health, Physicians Health Plan and the American Heart Association called Start!  We talked with Lisa Schanbacher, Parkview Health, Jay Gilbert, Physicians Health Plan and Mike Stetzel, Heart Walk Director about the program.




We also talked with Mayor Tom Henry about his stint on the treadmill and Parkview Field and the TinCaps.




The next night, the final home game of the regular season for the TinCaps, Parkview Samaritan celebrated their 20th Anniversary with a flyover.  Various members of the flight crews were available to talk with the public.  We talked with Cathy Harris, Director of Flight and EMS about the anniversary.




History of Parkview Samaritan:
Parkview Hospital began the Samaritan Flight Program on November 18, 1989, with one helicopter based at Parkview Hospital in Fort Wayne, Ind.  A second helicopter was added in February, 1999 based at Rochester Airport in Rochester, Indiana.  The medical flight program exists to compliment ground emergency medical services by providing fast transport for trauma, critically ill, cardiac and neonatal patients.  Both helicopters are called into action by Parkview Huntington Hospital’s EMS dispatch system.

Helicopter Specs:
Model – French-made American Eurocopter 365 N-2-Dauphin models with twin turbine engines
Flight speed – average 180 mph
Fuel – Jet A fuel; five fuel tanks; can fly up to three hours
Patients – equipped to transport two adult patients
Crew – one pilot, one nurse and one paramedic
Service area – 100-mile radius from Fort Wayne and Rochester covering the northern half of Indiana and northwestern Ohio
Only IFR certified flight program in Indiana

Scenes: Samaritan lands at scenes of crashes, farm accidents, house fires and water-related accidents. The region’s fire and EMS systems prepare a safe landing zone and communicate via radio with the Samaritan crew prior to the helicopter’s landing. They also assist with making the scene safe for the patient, the flight crew and members of the community.

Interesting Facts:

  • Samaritan leaves the helipad on average 5.6 minutes from the time a call is received.
  • Samaritan 1 (based in Fort Wayne) averages two flights per day, and Samaritan 2 (based in Rochester) averages one and a half flights per day.
  • 50 percent of Samaritan calls are trauma related and 32 percent are transports, taking patients from one hospital to another for specialities such as cardiac or neuro that are not available at the referring facility.
  • Weather greatly determines the number of Samaritan flights. Summer months are the most active, due to motor vehicle injuries and water sports.
  • Parkview has the only Instrumental Flight Rules (IFR) certified program in the State of Indiana. IFR certified means the helicopters can fly by instrument guides in certain types of weather that may not be possible by visual flight routes.

Parkview Samaritan’s webpage

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