STARS offers time, hope and life-saving transport to critically ill and injured patients.

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Emergency Services

When seconds count and the mission is critical, timely and accurate sharing of information is vital to the patient’s outcome. To meet this need, the STARS Emergency Link Centre (ELC) is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by a team of highly skilled Communication Specialists.

In Alberta and Saskatchewan, some of the many responsibilities the STARS ELC staff carries out include:

  • Overseeing STARS helicopter missions
  • Coordinating transport and care for critically ill and injured patients
  • Facilitating on line medical consultations

Oversee STARS helicopter missions

While the STARS helicopter is responding to the scene of an emergency or carrying out an inter-hospital patient transfer, the STARS ELC facilitates communication between the helicopter-based crew and external organizations such as ground ambulance, fire services and hospital staff.

Additionally, the STARS ELC manages requests for deployment of the helicopters, monitors the location of the helicopters while in flight, and coordinates landing zone preparation prior to their arrival.

Coordinate transport and care for critically ill patients

When a critical illness or injury occurs, the STARS ELC plays a coordinating role in overseeing the patient’s care until they arrive at the hospital. By effectively managing information and connecting key decision makers together, the treatment of a patient en route is made more efficient and effective. The STARS ELC will:

  • Teleconference with a STARS Transport Physician who can assess the patient’s status and determine the best mode of transport and treatment to be carried out before arrival at the receiving hospital.
  • Determine the availability of transport resources and the duration of the transport mission.
  • Notify and, if required, teleconference the transport crew with the physicians and nursing staff at the receiving hospitals to discuss the patient’s condition.

Facilitate On Line Medical Consultations

While patients are under the care of ground ambulance crews, EMTs and Paramedics have the option of requesting an On Line Medical Consultation from a physician. In Alberta, the STARS ELC facilitates this by linking these crews with an on-call specialist who can provide the required medical guidance and support.

Call Answering for Volunteer Search and Rescue Organizations

The STARS ELC provides a single point of contact to activate and dispatch a range of volunteer search and rescue agencies, including Pincher Creek SAR, Cochrane SAR, the Canadian Search Dog Association and the Alberta Cave Rescue Organization. When an incident occurs requiring their involvement, STARS ELC staff ensure all members are rapidly informed.