Reduced transport time of patients from the scene of an accident to definitive surgical treatment is one important reason to employ ambulance helicopters on trauma missions. However, if the helicopter is unable to land close to the scene, the transport time may be increased compared to transport with ground ambulance, due to time-consuming transfer of the patient between vehicles.
The objective of this study was to evaluate how the landing site, as determined by distance from the scene, and rapid sequence intubation (RSI) affected on-scene time (OST).
This was a prospective observational study performed during a 12-month period in a mixed urban and rural anesthesiologist-staffed Helicopter Emergency Medical Service in Norway. Data regarding the landing sites, the accident, and patient treatment were recorded.
A total of 252 primary trauma missions were included in the study. In 75% of the missions, the aircraft landed