LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) — Penn State Health Life Lion Critical Care Transport announced that they will be welcoming a new helicopter to their fleet, as well as establishing a new critical care transport base on the Penn State Health Lancaster Medical Center campus.
The new H155 model developed by Airbus will join a fleet of three other helicopters.
According to Penn State Health, Life Lion now has the two largest aeromedical helicopters in the state, each equipped with large interior cabins that allow for advanced lifesaving equipment, as well as room for medical specialists to administer care.
All four of the Life Lion aircraft have a total of two engines and are equipped with instruments that allow for a safe flight in many different flight conditions, including low visibility.
“Regularly updating and expanding our equipment reinforces our ability to provide the highest-quality care for critically ill and injured patients,” said Keith McMinn, director of Penn State Health Life Lion. “Adding a new helicopter to our fleet allows us to increase our capacity to provide leading-edge medical care to the region.”
Lancaster Medical Center will also have a new critical care transport base, where closer medical air and ground transport coverage will occur.
Life Lion has two other bases located at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and one at the Carlisle Airport.
According to Penn State Health, all three locations are staffed by expertly trained, highly specialized crew members including flight nurses, flight paramedics, pilots, and an in-house maintenance team.
Three of Life Lion’s helicopters are in service at all times, while the fourth helicopter undergoes scheduled maintenance, Penn State Health says.
“Safe air transport when moments count is a key component of high-quality emergency medical care, and adding a base for it here reflects our commitment to being close to our patients when they need us most,” said Dr. Michael Reihart, director of emergency services at Lancaster Medical Center.
Life Lion Critical Care also has a pediatric ground transport ambulance in addition to the four helicopters.
According to Penn State Health, since its first patient flight in 1986, Life Lion has flown more than 45,000 patients. Stroke and cardiac patients, traumatic accident and burn victims, critically ill infants, and others in urgent need of high levels of care have flown in Life Lion.