Pafford Emergency Medical Service traded in their Bell 206 L4 helicopter, which started servicing the Delta last year, for a faster, bigger, and more powerful aircraft, the Bell 407.
This helicopter is the fastest in the Delta and will respond to emergencies in a 150-mile radius around Clarksdale, where the helicopter will be housed.
The new helicopter, which will continue to be called AIR ONE-DELTA, is now able to offer assistance to all levels of ICU care, patients up to 500 pounds, as well as emergency care.
AIR ONE-DELTA is one of only three helicopters in Mississippi that has the capability of treating ICU patients.
The new AIR ONE-DELTA has been operational for two months and is already the busiest helicopter in the Delta, according to Program Director Keith Carter.
“When 911 is called, the dispatcher uses our Integrated Response System to simultaneously activate AIR ONE-DELTA and Pafford ambulances to greatly reduce our response time,” said Carter.
This response system has been in place since the first AIR ONE-DELTA became operational last year and cuts the response time of nurses and paramedics by five to seven minutes, which can be critical in life threatening situations.
The medical staff on board the AIR ONE-DELTA flight crew consists of certified emergency nurses and critical care paramedics.
By the end of the year Pafford’s entire staff of nurses and paramedics will take a specialty exam to become flight certified.
Although this certification is not needed to be on the flight crew, it will be a board certification showing that they are experts in their field.