A Search and Rescue (SAR) team of six from Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island conducted a medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) from Olympic Medical Center in Port Angeles, Wash. to the University of Washington Hospital in Seattle on Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017.
The SAR alert crew received an early morning call for help from Olympic Medical Center staff for an elderly male whose pacemaker was no longer functioning properly. The crew launched just before 3:45 a.m. and arrived at Olympic Medical Center to conduct patient turnover at 4:00 a.m. After the turnover was complete the crew took off and proceeded directly to the University of Washington Hospital where the patient was turned over to a higher level of care.
This was the 20th Medical Evacuation (MEDEVAC) of 2017 for NAS Whidbey Island SAR, which has also conducted seven Searches and 36 Rescue missions delivering 70 lives to a higher level of care.
The Navy SAR unit operates three MH-60S helicopters from NAS Whidbey Island as search and rescue/medical evacuation (SAR/MEDEVAC) platforms for the EA-18G aircraft as well as other squadrons and personnel assigned to the installation. Pursuant to the National SAR Plan of the United States, the unit may also be used for civil SAR/MEDEVAC needs to the fullest extent practicable on a non-interference basis with primary military duties according to applicable national directives, plans, guidelines and agreements; specifically, the unit may launch in response to tasking by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (based on a Washington State Memorandum of Understanding) for inland missions, and/or tasking by the United States Coast Guard for all other aeronautical and maritime regions, when other assets are unavailable.