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STARS trials in-flight medical data transfer with SKYTRAC


October 28, 2021
By Helicopters Staff


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The Medical Data Transfer capability provided by SKYTRAC is engineered to enable air medical operators to transmit real-time patient medical data. (Photo: Provided by SKYTRAC, STARS)

SKYTRAC Systems Ltd. and STARS air ambulance have completed what they describe as a first-of-its-kind in-flight Medical Data Transfer trial onboard STARS’ new five-blade Airbus H145-D3 aircraft.

The Medical Data Transfer capability is engineered to enable air medical operators to transmit real-time patient medical data such as O2 and CO2 saturation, pulse rate, and blood pressure data directly to remote transport physicians and receiving centers from any point on the globe through SKYTRAC’s connectivity solution.

SKYTRAC explains this unique mix of satellite, cellular, and Wi-Fi connectivity is made possible by its ISAT-200A and DAL-200 avionics, which offer operators data routing through various channels for real-time medical data acquired from onboard medical devices. The capability enables transport physicians to view patient data remotely through secure servers.

Prior to STARS’ successful in-flight trial, SKYTRAC conducted on-ground testing with STAT MedEvac in February 2020, where engineers configured a ZOLL X Series monitor/defibrillator to successfully transmit encrypted medical data.

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SKYTRAC explains this expandable capability will enable healthcare practitioners to access data like 12-lead reports before patients arrive at the receiving hospital, saving valuable seconds during one of the riskiest phases of care. Telemedicine applications may also be enabled, pending the availability of the required onboard equipment.

“STARS is very excited to see this capability successfully trialed on our aircraft,” mentions Cindy Seidl, Chief Clinical Officer, STARS air ambulance. “The ability for our remote transport physicians to view real-time data enables us to be even more reactive when transporting patients to receiving centers.”

The Iridium-based ISAT-200A satellite communications terminal features data acquisition capabilities and services such as voice and text communications, aircraft tracking, and satellite push-to-talk (PTT) through a Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite network for resilient low-latency narrowband bandwidth immune to natural disasters and catastrophic events. In regions where cellular connectivity is available, SKYTRAC’s DAL-200 can switch to utilize cellular data.

“SKYTRAC has worked closely with STARS and STAT MedEvac over the years to create a truly innovative capability that has far-reaching impact within the Emergency Medical Service sector,” said Mandi Skinner, Regional Business Manager, SKYTRAC. “We look forward to growing our partnership with STARS, and ultimately to a successful fleet-wide implementation.”


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