MUSCATINE, Iowa-As emergency medical service providers and healthcare workers across Muscatine County and Iowa continue to work on the frontlines against COVID-19, AirCare took to the skies to raise their spirits. In a nod to the famous Iowa City Wave, AirCare flew over Muscatine and nine other cities, encouraging citizens to come out and wave to them to celebrate local healthcare and emergency professionals’ work and National EMS week.
The air ambulance service for the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, AirCare, often serves patients in Muscatine County. Working in tandem with fire departments across Muscatine County and UnityPoint Trinity Muscatine Hospital, AirCare transports critically ill people who need more advanced care quickly to the University Hospital. As a frequent local provider, AirCare naturally wanted to show support to healthcare and EMS workers they work with regularly. “Anytime we have a critical or trauma patient in Muscatine County, the responding Fire/EMS units can request a helicopter be dispatched to the scene. Aircare would then be contacted to respond and they would come pick up the patient and take them directly to the U of I Hospital for treatment,” explained Chris Jasper, manager of the Muscatine County Joint Communications Center, which receives 911 calls and dispatches appropriate help. “The Paramedics, nurses, and physician on board these helicopters come and take care of some of our most critical patients and get them safely to the trauma center in Iowa City for further treatment,” Jasper elaborated.
On May 20, two AirCare helicopters flew over UnityPoint Trinity Muscatine Hospital around 9:40 a.m. In the parking lot below, hospital staff and local residents, spaced an appropriate distance apart, waved to the pilots as they flew by. “I think this is just a cool event for the community to show their support for our EMS folks and show their support to the hardworking men and women that also work for Aircare,” shared Jasper. “I am grateful that Aircare chose Muscatine as one of the communities to fly over as it will give us an opportunity to show them our support,” he added.