Coast Guard medevacs ailing cruise ship employee

SAN DIEGO – An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Sector San Diego medically evacuated a cruise ship employee 212 miles south of San Diego Friday afternoon.

The crew of the cruise ship Norwegian Star notified the Coast Guard that the 66-year-old man was experiencing severe abdominal pain. A Coast Guard flight surgeon was consulted and recommended the man be medically evacuated.

In addition to the helicopter from San Diego, an HC-130 Hercules plane from Air Station Sacramento was also launched to provide long range coverage during the medevac.

Once on scene, the helicopter crew hoisted the patient from the cruise ship. Aboard the aircraft, the flight surgeon and aircrew provided medical care to the patient.

“There is a lot of planning that goes into every search and rescue case,” said Lt. Brian Kudrle, an aircraft commander stationed at Sector San Diego. “Long range medevacs such as the case today, require extra coordination. This one involved a local flight surgeon who accompanied us and Air Station Sacramento which provided aerial support.”

The patient was transferred to medical personnel at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, Calif., just after 3 p.m.

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