A LifeFlight helicopter ambulance. Tom Judge of the LifeFlight Foundation will speak July 31 at the Northeast Harbor Library. PHOTO COURTESY OF NEH LIBRARY

LifeFlight is talk topic

MOUNT DESERT — Tom Judge, director of the Lifeflight Foundation, will speak at the Northeast Harbor Library on Wednesday, July 31, at 5:30 pm. Judge will discuss the mission of Maine’s air ambulance organization.

The mission of LifeFlight is to provide the very best critical care and transport patients across the state when they need it most.

The LifeFlight clinical teams (one nurse and one paramedic) transport more than 2,200 patients each year with helicopters, an airplane and dedicated ground ambulances.

More than 26,000 patients and families have been affected since the service began in 1998.

Helicopters sometimes land near the scene of a highway accident or fire to pick up a patient, but they most often transport patients from a community hospital – such as Mount Desert Island Hospital – to a larger medical center that offers more advanced or specialized care. Most patients are taken to Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor or Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston. Those hospitals are where the state’s two LifeFlight helicopters are based.

Those hospitals also transfer critically ill or injured patients to even larger institutions, primarily Maine Medical Center in Portland and Massachusetts General and Brigham and Women’s in Boston.

Occasionally, LifeFlight will pick up a patient on an outer island or some other remote location and take them to a community hospital for care.

Judge said that is usually because, once the LifeFlight crew arrives and has an opportunity to evaluate the patient’s condition, they find it isn’t as serious as originally thought.

This talk is free and open to the public. Contact 276-3333.

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