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Care Flight, a Service of REMSA Health, Announces New Aviation Vendors for Rotor and Fixed Wing Services


May 16, 2024 (Reno, Nev.) – REMSA Health announces that Care Flight, the organization’s critical care transport division, is partnering with two pioneering healthcare aviation service providers. Air Methods will be the vendor for the maintenance and pilot staffing of the program’s four rotor wing air ambulances. Life Flight Network will be the vendor for the maintenance and pilot staffing of its fixed-wing aircraft. Care Flight will continue to provide clinical staffing on both air platforms.

“Our organization looks forward to partnering with Air Methods and Life Flight Network, two organizations that are committed to safety and clinical excellence, for the benefit of patient care,” said Barry Duplantis, president and CEO, REMSA Health. “Care Flight is a vital part of our area’s healthcare ecosystem, particularly in rural communities. The relationships with Air Methods and Life Flight Network are an important part of ensuring people across the region can access critical care medical transport when it matters most.”

“Together with REMSA Health, we will ensure that we operate with the highest standards of safety, efficiency, and reliability,” said JaeLynn Williams, CEO, Air Methods. “Our expertise in fuel contract management, coupled with our team of tenured, highly-experienced pilots who are familiar with the geography and a spare aircraft dedicated to REMSA Health, we aim to optimize operations and provide unparalleled reliability and readiness, ensuring that every call for service is met with steadfast response.”

“It is our privilege to have the opportunity to provide fixed-wing aviation services for a program as distinguished as Care Flight,” said Ben Clayton, CEO, Life Flight Network. “With a longstanding history of collaboration between our organizations, this partnership stands as a testament to our shared commitment to delivering critical air medical services to the people who need us most. Keeping patients at the center of our mission, we look forward to working side-by-side with the incredible care providers at Care Flight as we extend our lifesaving aviation resources to their Reno, Nevada base and the communities beyond.”

Starting today, Thursday, May 16, 2024, Air Methods will begin operating as Care Flight’s rotor wing aviation vendor. Life Flight Network will begin operating as Care Flight’s fixed wing aviation vendor. Prior to becoming fully operational, both Air Methods and Life Flight Network completed aircraft safety reviews, pilot training and crew familiarization flights with Care Flight personnel.

Prior to this change, Med-Trans was Care Flight’s rotor wing aviation vendor, and Guardian Flight was its fixed wing aviation vendor, both are subsidiaries of Global Medical Response (GMR). REMSA Health opted to make a switch in vendors after GMR notified Care Flight that it would be increasing costs outside of its existing contract. Since arbitrarily raising costs as GMR proposed is counter to REMSA Health’s non-profit mission, it issued a Request for Information from alternate air ambulance operators. After a thorough review process, Air Methods and Life Flight Network were chosen. All mechanics and pilots who were with the Care Flight program at the time the announcement was made have opted to continue working with Care Flight, thereby transferring their employment to Life Flight Network and Air Methods.

“We are confident about a smooth transition into these partnerships,” said Duplantis. “Patient care and requestor experience will be seamless. Care Flight remains committed to facilitating the closest air asset, regardless of which program it serves, because it is the right thing to do for patient care.”

Air Methods conducts more than 100,000 transports annually across 250 bases in 46 states. It is the largest air medical emergency transport service in the country operating under a unified Federal Aviation Administration Part 135 Certificate, which allows for charter flights on demand without scheduled air service. Its Level 5 safety management system is in the top 1% of all Part-135 operators.

Life Flight Network is a not-for-profit patient transport service owned by a consortium of non-profit healthcare systems and serves Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana. It provides emergency care and transport to roughly 15,000 patients annually from 29 bases. Life Flight Network maintains the industry’s pre-eminent national and international safety and operations accreditations, including being the first air medical company to be dually accredited for safety by the Helicopter Association International and International Standards of Business Aviation Operations.

Since 1981 when Care Flight began, it has transported and treated critically ill and injured patients with a commitment to clinical excellence. Each year, Care Flight’s helicopter, fixed-wing and critical care ground transport services respond to approximately 3,000 requests and transport more than 2,100 patients. Accredited for 21 consecutive years by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems (CAMTS), the national organization that evaluates medical air services, Care Flight’s helicopter fleet is staffed by highly-trained medical critical care nurses and paramedics committed to continuing the legacy of safely providing clinically excellent, compassionate care.


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