NY legislature passes bill allowing air ambulances to carry blood
The bill passed unanimously in the Assembly and Senate and is now headed to the governor's desk
By Laura French
ALBANY, N.Y. — A bill that will allow air ambulances in New York to carry blood passed unanimously in the state Assembly and Senate this week.
According to Sen. Michelle Hinchey (D-46th District), who co-sponsored the bill, New York is the only state in the country that does not allow medical flight crews to carry and transfuse blood. Under the new bill, which will now be headed to the desk of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, air ambulance companies will be able to store blood at their bases, provide blood transfusions for patients on flights and distribute unused blood products to local hospitals.
Sen. Peter Oberacker (R-51st District), who also co-sponsored the bill, called the ability to transfuse blood on flights "a true lifesaver, especially in the rural areas I represent," and added, "As an EMS squad member, and a father who nearly lost his son due to a tragic accident, I know firsthand the positive difference this legislation will make."