1. Dana Strittmatter was boiling water in her kitchen in July when it spilled on her leg. After paramedics from Benbrook’s Emergency Medical Services arrived, they called for a medical helicopter from PHI Air Medical...she was treated and released in an hour. One doctor told him that abuse of medical helicopters is a growing problem. The hospital expected her to arrive by ambulance. The final bill was $17,500.
2. Abuse of medical helicopters "goes on every day in this country," said Dr. Bryan Bledsoe, an emergency room physician in Midlothian and a vocal critic of the air ambulance industry. Bledsoe said, a patient was brought by helicopter to his emergency room with a sore throat. :rolleyes:
3. Some air ambulance companies court the paramedics who make the decisions about whether to use a helicopter. Some companies, he said, offer paramedics small gifts such as pizza dinners, baseball caps or coffee mugs.