January 5, 2017 | Mayaguez, Puerto Rico | Sandra Caro/IAD Staff
Bella Vista Hospital, a facility owned and operated by the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, inaugurated its first helicopter during a short ceremony last month. The modern helicopter, which sits atop the hospital’s newest tower, represents a historic moment for the 62-year-old facility.
“With this new acquisition, Bella Vista Hospital is making history by providing air transportation to patients in need of immediate medical attention and direct access to the intensive care unit, operating room, and the emergency room service of our hospital,” said Luis Rivera, administrator of Bella Vista Hospital.
Rivera stated that the helicopter and its landing structure has been certified by the Federal Aviation Administration, and will be available to transport trauma patients 24 hours a day.
Hospital leaders took a test run on the new helicopter with the Aeromed company, which offers ambulance air transport services, during the special ceremony. The new ambulance services were covered by three major newspapers on the island, hospital leaders said.
BVH’s Engineering and Physical Plant Director Antonio Crespo said the landing structure measures 40 square feet and classifies as 10D39, which supports the heavy weight of the helicopter. The helicopter has a security lighting system which allows for remote activation by the pilot, a first on the island, said Rivera.
Rivera explained that the Hospital follows rigorous standards for the air transfer of patients in case the patient needs to be transported to another hospital.
Established in 1954, Bella Vista Hospital is operated by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and provides services to more than 20,000 patients each year. The facility has 153 beds and houses state-of-the-art equipment for services which include: Imaging center, radiotherapy center, rehabilitation center, clinical laboratory, physical therapy, respiratory therapy, pediatric, cancer institute, family and chaplaincy residency, and more. The hospital is part of the Bella Vista health systems which inludes a policlinic and health insurance plan.
To learn more about Bella Vista Hospital, visit bvhpr.org