Geelong Advertiser - - NEWS - JEMMA RYAN

BAR­WON Health’s $11.5 mil­lion he­li­pad is reg­u­larly help­ing save lives, av­er­ag­ing al­most three air am­bu­lance trans­fers a week since com­menc­ing op­er­a­tions.

The Gee­long hospi­tal as­set has been used for 196 flights to date, 143 of which were recorded in the 12 months since it opened in June last year.

About 59 per cent of trans­fers recorded have come from the EMS4 air am­bu­lance based in War­rnam­bool.

Bar­won Health emer­gency de­part­ment di­rec­tor Michael Sheri­dan es­ti­mated the av­er­age us­age was an in­crease of about 50 per cent com­pared to the pre­vi­ous he­li­pad.

He said it had im­proved the abil­ity for pa­tients to ar­rive at Bar­won Health con­sis­tently.

“Ac­cess to the pre­vi­ous he­li­pad was some­times lim­ited by the build­ings around it, par­tic­u­larly weather pat­terns that made it dif­fi­cult to land.

“Now, as one of the high­est points in Gee­long, it’s al­ways un­in­ter­rupted ac­cess to the hospi­tal.”

Dr Sheri­dan said there had been a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in the num­ber of crit­i­cally un­well peo­ple treated lo­cally.

In par­tic­u­lar, reg­u­lar use has been made of the catheter­i­sa­tion lab­o­ra­tory, where pro­ce­dures are per­formed on peo­ple who have had heart at­tacks.

“The new he­li­pad and lift

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