Revelstoke celebrates opening of Queen Victoria Hospital heliport

QVH will be able to transfer critical patients to a higher level of care as quickly as possible

There was a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new heliport today at the Queen Victoria Hospital in Revelstoke.

“Today marks the end of a three year journey,” says Steven Hui, Revelstoke District Health Foundation board chair, to a crowd of roughly a hundred people.

The heliport received Transport Canada certification in May and has since been used five times.

READ MORE: Queen Victoria Hospital helipad in Revelstoke approved for landing

The project cost more than $600,000 was made possible through funding support of the Revelstoke District Health Foundation (RDHF), the North Okanagan Columbia Shuswap Regional Hospital District, the City of Revelstoke Tourism Infrastructure Committee, donated services from local contractors as well as many community members.

“So many times I was speechless and awed at the generosity. And I had to ask myself why. I realized that Revelstoke is a community and we’re special. We care for one another,” says Hui.

It only took four month to raise the needed funds.

READ MORE: Heli-pad fundraising targeted exceeded

Revelstoke is an isolated mountain community and some critical patients have to be sent to Kelowna, which is more than a 200 km drive away.

“This is amazing for your community,” says Spring Hawes, Interior Health director.

“The Revelstoke District Health Foundation is thrilled,” says Steven Hui, RDHF board chair (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)

“Medevac saved my life. I’m glad you now have it in your community,” continued Hawes.

Occasionally helicopters would land at the hospital in the past, either in the field or the parking lot. However, usually they would land at the airport and patients would be ground transferred from the hospital to the awaiting chopper. All of which, took time.

The crowd heard from past patients who owe their recovery to helicopters.

“It’s a great day for Revelstoke.” says outgoing Revelstoke mayor Mark McKee (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)

“Seconds matter,” says Angus Woodman, local Revelstoke resident. Woodman suffered a serious ski accident in the past and credits part of his recovery to a helicopter.

“Not everyone who comes here needs a helicopter. But by god you sure need it when you need it,” says Bill Zmaeff, another Revelstoke resident. Zmaeff says it was a helicopter that saved his life when he had a heart attack.

“I was lying there in a cloud. It was like I was in a marshmallow. Then I saw a pilots uniform.”

Roughly 45 minutes later, Zmaeff landed on the roof of the hospital at Kelowna.

“It may not have ended as well without a helicopter.”

A helicopter was suppose to land at the heliport during the event, but low lying clouds prevented it.


 

@pointypeak701
liam.harrap@revelstokereview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

Revelstoke’s forestry museum launches podcasts and new website

One of their summer students is working remotely

Glimpses of Revelstoke’s past for Aug. 6

Chautauqua, CPR strike and destructive fire

Morning Start: The human body contains trace amounts of gold

Your morning start for Friday, August 7, 2020

A variety of art coming to Revelstoke gallery this fall

A members’ show in December will act as a gift market

Roots & Blues announces ticket giveaway ahead of online festival

The festival is streaming free online this year, but those who pre-register can win passes for 2021.

VIDEO: U.S. Air Force pilot does fly-by for B.C. son amid COVID border separation

Sky-high father-son visit plays out over White Rock Pier

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

Collapse of Nunavut ice shelf ‘like losing a good friend:’ glaciologist

The ice shelf on the northwestern edge of Ellesmere Island has shrunk 43 per cent

Police watchdog deems Kelowna RCMP not responsible for man’s death

The man spoke to police after a car crash before leaving on foot; he was found dead six hours later

‘It’s just my job’: Off-duty Peachland paramedic saves choking girl downtown Penticton

Family vacationing in Penticton assisted by off-duty paramedic, who helps save 13-year-old

Central Okanagan adds 3,600 jobs in July: Statistics Canada

The region’s unemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 10 per cent in July

Vandals target North Okanagan camper

COVID-19 ‘No camping’ warnings sprayed on local camper

Evacuation alert for 43 homes near Dry Lake fire rescinded

Fire status changed to Under Control, crews remain on site patrolling and extinguishing hot spots

Fundraiser launched for West Kelowna family who lost their home to fire

The family’s Sunview Drive home was destroyed after an accidental fire on Aug. 6

Most Read