Life Lion Ride Along/Observational Experience Program

Life Lion is pleased to offer qualified local public safety personnel the opportunity to join us as an observer on the Life Lion helicopter or Critical Care ground ambulance.  The observer will gain an overview of program operations, safety of the landing zone, and patient care capabilities within the critical care transport environment.


  1. All observers will be scheduled via
  2. Qualified public safety personnel include:
    • Active Regional Paramedics, PHRN's, EMT's, and  Fire Department Officers in volved in landing zone operations.
      Previous attendance at a Life Lion Landing Zone class within one year is required.
    • Penn State Hershey Medical Staff, Residents, Fellows, Medical Students, and PSU Nursing Students
  3. Those not meeting the above criteria may be considered on a case by case basis at the discretion of the Program Manager, Chief Flight Nurse, or Senior Paramedic.
  4. Observers will be scheduled on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.  Other days of the week may be considered on a case by case basis.
  5. The observation experience will be scheduled between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to   5:00 p.m.
  6. A letter must be obtained by the non-PSHMC/COM  observer candidate from the respective supervisor or Chief confirming their employment or active status within the organization as well as previous attendance of our LZ class.
  7. Patient care and safety are our top priorities. Professional behavior is expected at all times.  Staff of the Medical Center should review the Code of Ethical Behavior policy in the Hospital Administration Manual A-20.
  8. Patient confidentiality will be maintained at all times. Please review the Penn State Hershey Confidentiality (HIPPA) Agreement.  A signed copy of the agreement is required prior to beginning the observational experience.
  9. Professionally appropriate clothing will be worn for the observational experience with weather conditions taken into consideration.  Casual dress pants and sturdy footwear like duty boots are required. No denim jeans, t-shirts, scrubs, or open toe/heel clogs are not permitted.
  10. Hospital employees will wear the issued hospital ID during the observational experience. Non hospital employees must bring a valid government photo ID (driver's license) and present it on the scheduled observation day.
  11. Observers must be at least 21 years of age, and weigh less than 225 lbs.  You will be required to have a weigh in upon reporting for your experience.  Regardless of weight, the observer must be able to adequately secure the required seat belts/safety devices for transport in the aircraft or ambulance.
  12. Observers that are pregnant and wish to observe on the Life Lion aircraft will need to obtain a release from your obstetrician prior to your observational experience.  Flying on our aircraft is discouraged beyond the second trimester. 
  13. Observers must speak and understand English.
  14. All observers will be in good physical condition with the ability to climb in and out the helicopter or ambulance without assistance and have the ability to ambulate in potentially uneven terrain and tolerate weather extremes.  
  15. Observers may not be able to accompany us on certain specialty transports due to operational and seating capacity issues.
  16. Observers on the Life Lion aircraft may have to remain at an incident scene in the event of a double patient flight due to limited aircraft seating.  We will make every effort to make alternate arrangements to return the observer to the base of origin.
  17. The Life Lion transport crews have the option to discontinue the observational experience in the event of any transgressions related to these guidelines.
  18. In the event of forecasted weather extremes, please call 717-531-8000 the day before you are scheduled to confirm the status of your experience.
  19. Please call 717-531-8000 if you are going to be late or need to cancel.
  20. On the observation day the following documents will be needed upon arrival prior to starting the observation:
  21. Please bring lunch for yourself. 

After reading the above, continue to the Observer Request Form >>>