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Press Release

Issued by Mercy Life Line.

February 25, 2020

Mercy Life Line Air Medical Service comes to Fort Smith

The Mercy Fort Smith health system in Arkansas will debut its Life Line air ambulance service on April 1. The Life Line helicopter will help Mercy provide more lifesaving services to the Arkansas River Valley.

Mercy Life Line has provided safe, rapid air transport for emergency patients since 1984, serving patients in northwest Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma. Mercy Life Line operates aircraft that are equipped with weather radar, auto pilot, terrain awareness and global positioning satellite technology. Like commercial airlines they use Instrument Flight Rules, which enables them to fly in some weather conditions when other helicopters can't. Mercy Life Line has a 35-year legacy of accident-free service, with its roots in Springfield.

“Mercy Life Line is excited to support Mercy Fort Smith along with the other critical access hospitals in the River Valley,” said D.J. Satterfield, programme director for Mercy Life Line. “Life Line brings over 35 years of accident free service, while providing continuity of care the community has come to expect from Mercy.”

Flight crews include a registered nurse, a paramedic and a pilot who respond to life-threatening emergencies including trauma, medical or obstetrical. Crews respond to any emergency scenes and to hospitals to transfer a critically ill patients to the appropriate hospital for their condition. Life Line is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems.

Mercy Fort Smith's helicopter will be housed at the Fort Smith Regional Airport.

“Mercy Fort Smith is excited about bringing faster, safer health care to those who need it in an emergency,” said Juli Stec, vice president of operations for Mercy Fort Smith.

Life Line aircrafts have the latest technology that allows flights during a wide spectrum of inclement weather and can fly under instrument flying rules (IFR).

Each helicopter includes the following safety features:

- Helicopter Terrain Awareness Warning System

- Traffic Avoidance Collision System

- Onboard weather radar

- Satellite weather

- Autopilot

- Night vision goggles

Clinical equipment on every flight includes:

- Onboard ventilator

- CPAP/BiPap

- Infusion pumps

- Advanced cardiac and hemodynamic monitoring

- Blood and plasma

Specialty flights are also equipped with:

- Intra-aortic balloon pump

- Impella

Life Line has a membership programme that protects members from any out-of-pocket expense for a transport by Life Line.