Students help Enloe secure new helicopter

The sky's the limit for these Chico State Pre-Nursing students addressing letters for the Make the Most of Midnight fundraiser and the Enloe Conference center. Photo credit: Grant Mahan

Nursing and pre-nursing students wrote letters Friday to family, friends and businesses to a fund a new flight care helicopter at Enloe Medical Center.

The new helicopter, an American Eurocopter EC130 Eco-Star, is larger, faster, quieter and can carry more patients than the current one, said Jolene Francis, director of advancement at Enloe.

The helicopter will also be fitted with a new neonatal transport isolette, a machine which can be used to transport small infants, she said.

The previous helicopter was 12-years-old.

“Imagine how much the technology has changed with cellphones in the last 12 years,” said Lisa Funé, advancement relations coordinator at the Enloe Foundation.”Similar levels of advancements have been made in helicopters.”

The helicopter will service a 70 mile radius around Enloe, Francis said.

Enloe is the only level 2 trauma center from Redding to Sacramento, meaning any major injuries or traumatic incidents that require a medevac will be serviced by them, she said.

It is because of this that Enloe has decided to upgrade their air power, Francis said.

Enloe paid $3.5 million for the helicopter using funding saved by the foundation, donations from over 2000 local households and businesses, and money earned from selling the old helicopter.

Steven Verstelle can be reached at [email protected] or @stevenverstelle on Twitter.