Sheriff Says Trauma Star Shows Fiscal Success


The Sheriff’s Trauma Star program has had a successful year, with money collected in the past fiscal year exceeding the costs of the program by $200,000.

This number takes into consideration the money spent to fund both the Sheriff’s Office Aviation Unit and Monroe County Fire Rescue costs of operation.

“We are very happy to be able to tell taxpayers in Monroe County that Trauma Star is paying for itself and then some,” said Sheriff Rick Ramsay. “The excess money collected, over and above our costs, will be returned to the County to offset other costs of other government operations.”

The Trauma Star program is essential to a county that has no trauma center for people who need treatment for life threatening illnesses and injuries. Monroe County residents are flown on the trauma helicopter at no cost to them, over and above what their insurance pays for the flight.

In the fiscal year lasting from October of 2015 to September of 2016, Trauma Star flew 471 people to mainland trauma hospitals, 86 more than the previous year. The Monroe County program that is jointly run by the Sheriff’s Office, which houses, flies and maintains the aircraft and Monroe County Fire Rescue, which provides the medical personnel.

The helicopter currently being used is a 1982 Sikorsky S-76 which was purchased used in 2006; the county recently purchased a second newer Sikorsky helicopter which should be authorized to fly patients next week.

“We look forward to continuing our life saving service,” said Sheriff Ramsay. “is a wonderful bonus to be able to say that Trauma Star pays for itself and that we are able to return a significant amount of excess to the County’s coffers, benefiting the taxpayers of Monroe County in the process.”

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2 thoughts on “Sheriff Says Trauma Star Shows Fiscal Success

  1. If Trauma Star is in the “black”, can you imagine what color would describe the profit margin for LifeNet? Any way that I can buy stock in LifeNet?

  2. Not much! Lifenet looses significant money on 7 out of 10 patient transports because of terrible government reimbursement from Medicare, Medicaid, and the uninsured. These payors pay well below the actual cost to transport the patient, making access to these lifesaving services dependent on full reimbursement from the 3 out of 10 commercially insured patients. This is nothing new, it’s a common practice in the medical industry called Cost-shifting. Hospitals have been doing that for decades, how do you think all of those unpaid emergency room bills get funded? Same thing with insurance- the young & healthy subsidize the old and poor. Being a Dr. you should know that! Lifenet does not get $50k from every patient.. not even close. FYI- Trauma Star bills non-residents $50k bills too.. along with taxing the residents! However none of the papers mention how much Trauma Star charges non-residents!

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