NEWS | HCDPBC US Health Care District of Palm Beach County State of Florida

Florida Trauma Hawk Received First AW169 Helicopter

Florida Trauma Hawk, the helicopter air ambulance service of the Health Care District of Palm Beach County (HCDPBC) received the first of two new Leonardo AW169 to replace the existing fleet of S-76 helicopters

Florida Trauma Hawk Received First AW169 Helicopter
HCDPBC, September 14, 2023 - The Health Care District of Palm Beach County, Florida is pleased to announced the delivery last week of the first of two Leonardo AW169 helicopters.

The AW169 helicopters were selected for Trauma Hawk following more than a decade of planning and due diligence. It’s anticipated the second helicopter will also be delivered this month.

Darcy J. Davis, CEO of the Health Care District said “This marks a new era in the Health Care District’s commitment to delivering safe, high-quality trauma services to our community. These state-of-the-art helicopters will provide swift and efficient air transportation to enhance patient access to critical medical services and improved healthcare outcomes.”

The Leonardo AW169 helicopters will replace the current Sikorsky S76-C+ aircraft, which have served the Health Care District and Palm Beach County since 1999. The new aircraft will remain out of service during a transition period while the flight team and mechanics complete specialized training to ensure a seamless shift to the new helicopters early next year. The Sikorsky aircraft will remain in service throughout the transition.

Kenneth A. Scheppke, MD, FAEMS, medical director of the Health Care District’s aeromedical and ground transportation programs, as well as the medical director for Palm Beach County Fire Rescue said “The Health Care District’s aeromedical program has been a key component of Palm Beach County’s integrated trauma system for more than 30 years. These new, technologically-advanced aircraft will play a key role in EMS [emergency medical services] response by providing critically ill and injured patients access to safe and rapid air transport in a county with a land area larger than the state of Rhode Island.”

One of the new standout features of the AW169 is its longitudinal roll-on stretcher system.

This technology minimizes patient movement during loading and unloading, providing a safe and efficient means of transport directly to a specialized medical center like one of the county’s two Level 1 trauma centers.

As a result, the Trauma Hawk medical team will no longer need to transfer patients onto hospital stretchers at the helipad, saving crucial minutes during lifesaving missions.

Jay Mazzone, the Health Care District’s director of aeromedical transportation said “These new aircraft are a leap forward in technology for both the pilots and the medical crews. With advanced avionics, larger and brighter displays, and the added capability of night vision goggles, we are moving into the next generation of aircraft that will help us maintain and enhance our relentless focus on safety.”

The air medical team aboard the Health Care District’s Federal Aviation Administration-certified air ambulances includes at least one Health Care District commercial instrument-rated pilot along with Palm Beach County Fire Rescue medical personnel. In addition to the pilots, the Health Care District employs a team of aviation technicians and program support staff.

Charles Coyle, division chief of medical services for Palm Beach County Fire Rescue said “We are grateful to the Health Care District of Palm Beach County for investing in the advancement and safety of the aeromedical program for the community. Our Palm Beach County Fire Rescue flight nurses and flight medics are excited and prepared to start the training process of learning all the nuances of this new high-tech helicopter.”

Clyde Woltman, CEO of Leonardo Helicopters U.S. said d“We are thrilled to deliver these two AW169 helicopters to our partner, the Health Care District of Palm Beach County. Our teammates across the world are fully committed to supporting the Health Care District’s critical missions to transport patients and save lives. I want to especially thank all of the administration, program and production staff involved from both Palm Beach County and Leonardo for their hard work and ongoing ”

Aircraft mentioned in this article :
AW169 N286BP     ( State of Florida )

Location : US Palm Beach Intl

  See also

List of Air Medical Ambulance Services
HCDPBC US Health Care District of Palm Beach County State of Florida
AW169 in US Air Methods
Palm Beach Trauma Hawk Upgrades to AW169

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