WAUSAU, WI—Ministry Health Care has announced today that it will consolidate the operations of the Medical Transportation Services it provides in central and northern Wisconsin into a singular operating unit.
Known as Spirit, Ministry Medical Transportation services provides emergency air, and urgent and non-emergent air and ground transportation of patients among hospital facilities in the region.
It will operate under the administrative direction of Monty Gallegos, System Director of Medical Transportation Services (MTS), and will continue to dispatch vehicles and staff from established bases in Marshfield, Weston, and Woodruff. The consolidation will result in improved coordination and more efficient operations. Prior to the consolidation, two distinct transport services were operated – one serving the Northwoods and the other serving Central Wisconsin.
Along with the organizational changes, Ministry is expanding its level of services to provide a higher level of care and greater access across the region. Service enhancements include the operation of a new 24/7 dedicated paramedic intercept vehicle based at Saint Clare’s Hospital in Weston, expansion of the availability of the Woodruff unit at Howard Young Health Care to 24/7 status, and the addition of a 12/7 ambulance transport service based in Rhinelander at Saint Mary’s Hospital.
According to Gallegos, “the expansion of services in the Northwoods will enable Ministry to get patients to an appropriate level of care much faster than before. Patients who need a higher level of care can be transported to Saint Clare’s Hospital in Weston, Saint Joseph’s Hospital in Marshfield, or other appropriate facilities depending upon their particular need.”
Ministry Health Care has been providing medical transportation services for the region for more than fifteen years with both ground and air transport. In addition to the new ground-based vehicles, Ministry will be flying a new state-of-the-art helicopter towards the end of this year. The new airship will serve all patients needs, but especially neonates, cardiac, and trauma patients.
The new instrument flight rules (IFR) aircraft will be outfitted with the latest technologies including but not limited to night vision goggles, terrain avoidance warning systems, weather radar, autopilot, and wire strike protection .to enhance the level of safety during flights.
“We recognize the need to provide greater access to care, especially emergency medical transport,” noted Stewart Watson, MD, a board-certified Emergency Medicine physician, President and CEO of Ministry Medical Group, and supervising executive of the Medical Transport Service. “The people and communities we serve will all benefit from the steps we are taking today to provide both the organizational structure and enhanced emergency transport services.”