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Medflight tragedy

Discussion in 'Emergency Medicine' started by Whisker Barrel Cortex, May 11, 2008.

  1. Whisker Barrel Cortex

    Whisker Barrel Cortex 1K Member 10+ Year Member

    Aug 10, 2001
    One of the University of Wisconsin Hospital Med-Flight helicopters crashed earlier today, killing all three crew on board.

    The three consisted of Darren Bean, M.D., Mark Coyne, R.N. and pilot Steve Lipperer.

    Dr. Bean was one of the best liked E.D. physicians and I was honored to work with him during internship as well as in radiology residency. I do not know the other two, but all three will be sorely missed.

    Be careful out there. Thank you to all of the Med-flight crews for all that they do and the risks they take.
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  3. NSAIDAllergy

    NSAIDAllergy 2+ Year Member

    Jan 25, 2008
    That is terrible to hear. How often does this happen? My family is concerned that I want to log some flight time while in residency; is this common? How safe are these choppers?
  4. bulgethetwine

    bulgethetwine Banned Banned 10+ Year Member

    Jan 4, 2005
    Condolences to all affected by this tragedy.

    As for flight safety.... Oh Boy, here we go ahead. Another debate of the safety (or lack thereof) of the flight programs. There are lots of threads periodically on SND.

    I will say this, it's not as common (though common overall, as I'm sure we're about to re-hash) that one of the University affiliated programs has a problem. Usually, it's the smaller helicopter companies in the community setting.
  5. ABBY109

    ABBY109 PGY-28 7+ Year Member

    Nov 24, 2006
    The issue of EMS helicopter safety will certainly come up again on these forums. It needs/has to be discussed. Everyone has been respectful in the acute phase- thank you. Lets give it a week or two so my crew and I can bury 3 dear friends we lost in this crash. After that, I am open to address all issues ( pros and cons) that you may have as students and residents associated with emergency medicine.

    After many years in aviation, I still consider the HEMS industry to be very safe . I will be out on one of the first flights when we resume operations

    For any residents who are flight physicians, if you are having any difficulties with the whole flight thing and need to talk – please PM me

    Michael Abernethy, MD, FAAEM

    Assistant Professor / Attending University of Wisconsin Emergency Medicine

    Flight Physician UW Med Flight ( 3500 pts transported and still climbing)
  6. racn911


    May 21, 2008
    I wish all that knew these people my deepest condolenses . Sorry for your loss.
  7. crewmaster1

    crewmaster1 Nattitwo 10+ Year Member

    Jul 26, 2005
    The Great Northwest
    I notice this was an attending flying.....does UW staff their helicopters with attendings only? How does this staffing model work? Are these attendings working in the ED or just staffing the chopper? How many places in the US have attendings flying? At cinci we always have a doc, usually a resident, but some of the attendings still fly "H" shifts which are dedicated helicopter shifts. Kinda fun to still be able to fly every once and a while as an attending. Just wondering.

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