Flying a trauma patient on a helicopter might increase survival chances

A recent study revealed that the chances of survival of a person seriously injured increases if they are flown to the trauma center on a helicopter instead of an ambulance. Though there are no concrete explanations, speculations point to two things, how fast the people are transported and the medical team on the helicopter.

Specialists say, it’s probably the combination of both the things and that it could be not one specific thing. For the study, 900 severely injured trauma patients were researched. Among these patients, car crash victims were the most common. The research material included 62,000 teens and adults who were flown to the trauma center by the chopper and 162,000 who were driven in an ambulance.

After intensive research, it was found that chances of survival were linked to the mode of transport. The researchers say that the chances increased by somewhere in the region of one percent to two percent. However, the researched did not have the information of how far away these people were from the hospital when they were injured and what kind of treatment they received when they were on the chopper or ambulance.

There has been some research already done on this subject. They did not provide an absolute answer and this isn’t one either.  Only recently can doctors also say that the mode transport of victims have an influence on their recovery. Until a few years ago, it wasn’t very clear.

A researcher also said that this is also a regional issue. There are helicopters being used in some places and there aren’t, in some places. “I think the trick is when do you use helicopters and when do you not use helicopters… and that is very regional,” he said.

People generally prefer to be flown in if they are severely injured. Be it themselves, family member or friends, they would want to make sure that they get medical attention and treatment on time.

Cost plays a very essential role in this issue. As a part of the research, the researchers calculated that it costs $5000 to airlift each patient. On the whole $325,000 would spent for each life saved.

Though this is no small number, it’s not all that far off compared to the other life saving procedures like open-heart surgery.

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