After a tragic crash which claimed the lives of three crew members, the University of Wisconsin Hospital's air transfer service will be back in operation, beginning at 9:00 Friday morning. The resumption of Med Flight service comes just under two weeks after the crash that killed flight physician Darren Bean, flight nurse Mark Coyne and pilot Steve Lipperer, and after three days of "confidence flight" for Med Flight staff. Doctor Bruce Lindsay, medical director of Med Flight, says the service will initially operate twelve hours a day from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., peak hours for Med Flight calls. Lindsay says it was important to resume patient flights for the Memorial Day weekend.
In addition to the pilot, a flight physician and nurse will staff every flight. Calls that come in from 9 p.m. to 9 a.m. will be handled as they would if Med Flight was already out on a flight. A network of hospitals around the state routinely backs up Med Flight when the helicopter is on another patient transport. The service will fly with one helicopter until the second aircraft can be replaced by the company that contracts with UW Health for Med Flight services.