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LifeSave Kansas Now Carries Life-Saving Whole Blood Onboard All Transports Across the State


Improving patient outcomes by transfusing donated whole blood to save lives in the air

Photo courtesy of LifeSave Kansas

Every LifeSave Kansas emergency air medical flight has whole blood on board.
Every LifeSave Kansas emergency air medical flight has whole blood on board.

Photo courtesy of LifeSave Kansas

Whole blood provides superior clotting over packed red blood cells and plasma alone.
Whole blood provides superior clotting over packed red blood cells and plasma alone.

Wichita, KS, June 18, 2024 – LifeSave Kansas, based in Emporia, Garden City, Liberal, and Wichita, is proud to announce they now carry and can administer whole blood on every air medical transport across the state. Having whole blood aboard their helicopters and fixed wing airplanes allows their industry-leading trauma clinicians to provide additional life-saving care when every minute counts.

“Because it holds all of the blood components—red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, and plasma—whole blood provides additional clotting factors that aren’t available in packed red blood cells and plasma alone,” said Sarah Dudte, a flight nurse with LifeSave 15 in Wichita. “Whole blood replaces the blood that is lost and also helps to stop the bleeding, all in one unit.”

Because each unit of whole blood provides all blood components, it offers superior outcomes for patients suffering from trauma or hemorrhagic shock. It is particularly valuable in rural areas where there may be limited access to donated blood. Since LifeSave Kansas carries its own blood supply, its clinicians can administer it in-flight while preserving hospital stock. The crews previously carried packed red blood cells and plasma but are excited to now carry whole blood, which delivers oxygen around the body more effectively.

“Having whole blood on our aircraft gives patients with life threatening hemorrhage the best chance of survival,” said Todd Goetz, clinical director with Air Methods, the leading air medical service provider in the nation and the parent company of LifeSave Kansas. “We are honored to bring this game changing treatment to the communities we serve.”

The earlier patients receive whole blood, the better their outcomes, showing the significance of pre-hospital transfusion. Moderately to severely injured patients, including those with head injuries, particularly benefit from whole blood transfusions.

All LifeSave Kansas clinicians have at least three years of experience in an emergency or intensive care setting before joining a flight crew. They receive ongoing advanced training, and every nurse and paramedic has access to Air Methods Ascend, an in-person and online training program that allows clinicians to perform at the top of their licensure. Air Methods Ascend is available to medical personnel across the country.

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