By Kase Wilbanks
Now from the palm of their hand first responders can have a LIFESTAR aircraft headed to their emergency using the FirstCall App.
"The app is unique in the ability to help them locate where their scene is," LIFESTAR Supervisor for the Flight Comm Transfer Center Thomas Fuller said. "When [first responders] get on scene they activate that application and then it will give them the GPS latitude and longitude, which is one of the things we need in order to send them the aircraft and locate them."
"With a traditional dispatch when they call on the phone, they could have to figure out where they are at," Fuller said. "Sometimes you are out in the middle of nowhere in the dark, fog, rain or whatever might be going on. They have to give us descriptors of things around them, crossroads, highways or things like that. Then we locate it on the map to get the lats and longs. With the application, they push the button and it brings up where they are located."
Those precious seconds or even minutes could mean the difference in life or death.
"The time involved in getting the aircraft to the patient is critical," Fuller said. "A lot of times you have somebody that's dying. To be able to locate them quickly is important."