Innovative Investments

Once again in 2011, Glens Falls Hospital made innovative investments to fulfill our Promise of Big-City Medicine and Hometown Care.


Helistop Saves Time and Lives

Glens Falls Hospital offers a wide variety of sophisticated care and specialists. But some patients - such as those with major trauma or severe burns - require a level of specialized care not offered here.

In those cases, when outside care is needed, every minute counts.

In 2011, Glens Falls Hospital invested in a critically important resource to get those patients the care they need, faster - a helistop which allows medical helicopters to land directly at the hospital, near the entrance to the Sheridan Family Emergency Care Center.

“Up until 2011, our medical flights had to land in a field about a mile from the hospital. This wasted critical minutes with patients transported from the Emergency Care Center via ambulance to the helicopter. Keep in mind, these people are in very serious condition,” says Douglas Girling, MD, a doctor in the Emergency Care Center. “By bringing the helicopter here, we reduced the time getting the patient in the air by 15 to 20 minutes. That might not seem like much, but in these serious situations, every second counts.”

Lifenet of New York provides air medical transportation services to the region, and each flight team includes a registered nurse and certified paramedic highly trained in the care of trauma, burn and critically ill patients. Once called, most helicopters arrive at GFH within 20 minutes. From May through December 2011, Lifenet made 28 medical transports from GFH, with a total of nearly 10 hours saved in patient transport time.

“It’s been an invaluable addition to the services we offer and is just another example of our commitment to the community when they need us most,” says Dr. Girling.

In the case of critically ill patients, every second counts.
- Douglas Girling, M.D.