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Life-Saving Heliport Coming Back To A Peninsula Hospital

BURLINGAME (KPIX 5) -- For the first time in more than five years, helicopters will once again be airlifting patients to Mills-Peninsula Medical Center to be treated for conditions like strokes or heart attacks.

Mills-Peninsula Medical Center CEO Janet Wagner said, "We will not only be able to serve our immediate community, but we'll be able to fly patients in who have needs for specialists."

The old helipad was demolished when the hospital was rebuilt in 2011.

The new one will bring in patients in need of specialized care. Often from smaller, less-equipped, regional hospitals.

Neighbor John Finnegan said, "Noise pollution is a problem."

But Finnegan says he knows the new helipad will mean more noise, but believes those concerns are outweighed by the potential for saving lives.

Finnegan said, "You're pulling in a patient that needs emergency care and time is of the essence., every minute counts. It would be really important."

Calstar helicopter pilot Joel Benning explains, "The urgency is really great for that patient to get there."

He said, "Ultimately, my job is to get my crew, my helicopter, that person, there safely."

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