Case Report|Articles in Press

Use of a Helicopter Emergency Medical Service Hangar as a Staging Care Unit in a Disaster-Affected Area

Published:March 04, 2023DOI:



      There are a few reports regarding the use of a hangar as a temporal medical facility (staging care unit [SCU]) during large-scale disasters. The aim of this study was to describe the activities performed by disaster medical assistance teams (DMATs) at the hangar of the eastern Shizuoka physician-staffed helicopter as an SCU in the 2022 Shizuoka Prefecture disaster drill.


      We selected the narrative method for this study.


      Four DMATs helped manage the SCU at the hangar. During the training period, there were 3 instances of a mock doctor helicopter landing and takeoff and 1 actual eastern Shizuoka doctor helicopter landing and takeoff while transporting a mock burn patient. Four DMATs treated 3 mock patients in addition to receiving training regarding medical materials. Such an SCU was able to reduce the burden on the disaster base hospital because many severely ill or traumatized mock patients were transported to the hospital. However, an evaluation meeting held after the drill revealed problems with lifelines, safety management, stock, and quality management of materials in an actual disaster situation.


      We reported our experience with a training exercise using a hangar of the eastern Shizuoka doctor helicopter as an SCU in the 2022 Shizuoka Prefecture disaster drill. There are advantages and disadvantages to using the hangar of a doctor helicopter in this way, so further investigation will be necessary.
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