Air Evac Lifeteam acquires Life Air operations

Air Evac Lifeteam acquires Life Air operations

3-Feb-2011 Source: Air Evac Lifeteam

Life Air, which operates air ambulance bases in Portsmouth and Chillicothe, Ohio, has been acquired by Air Evac Lifeteam, a leading air medical provider headquartered in West Plains, Mo.

Air Evac Lifeteam President and CEO Seth Myers said the air ambulance bases will continue to operate under the Life Air name and customers should expect to see a seamless transition as the Life Air employees continue their tradition of providing high quality critical care services to residents and hospitals in southern Ohio. Myers said it is Air Evac Lifeteam’s intention to employ the medical, pilot and maintenance staff at these two bases.

“The purchase of Life Air will help further the mission of Air Evac Lifeteam and the air ambulance industry by making air transport more accessible to more people, particularly those who live in rural communities,” Myers said. “Life Air will complement our operations and is a tremendous fit with our company’s mission to save lives in rural America. Both companies share the common belief that air ambulances should be placed in the areas of greatest need – in rural communities where response times may be long and critical life-saving care may be hours away.

“We’re looking forward to working with the Life Air staff to make air medical transport available to even more people who need this valuable service,” he added. “They have achieved an excellent reputation in the area for the quality of care they provide and feel this will be a great partnership for their customers and the future of Air Evac Lifeteam.”

Life Air was formed as an “arm” of Life Ambulance, a ground ambulance service which has been in operation since 1985. Life Ambulance will continue to operate under its present ownership. “This strategic sale was designed to allow Life Ambulance to continue to grow while benefiting from the vertical integration of an air and ground business model,” said Mike Pistole, Owner/CEO of Life Ambulance.

“Ground and Air transportation services share many things in common but also have some stark operational differences,” he explained. “This arrangement is designed to let each organization utilize their strengths and leverage a cooperative agreement between the two organizations. The end result is the same service, provided by the same personnel that Life Air customers have come to appreciate. The synergy between the two companies and Air Evac Lifeteam’s willingness to utilize Life’s personnel was paramount for me to come to the decision. It’s a source of pride that the Life Air name and people will continue to operate alongside Life Ambulance.”

Air Evac Lifeteam, the largest independently owned air medical service in the United States, is a leading provider of air medical transport to rural communities operating 97 bases in 14 centrally located states. The company operates the world’s largest fleet of more than 100 medically-equipped Bell 206 LongRanger helicopters and has safely flown more than 225,000 people who were in critically need of care since its founding in 1985.

Air Evac Lifeteam crews, which include a registered nurse, paramedic and pilot are on call at each base 24 hours a day. They provide on-the-scene medical care, rapid transport to medical facilities and critical care inter-facility transfers. Each helicopter is equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment and crewmembers are trained in advanced pre-hospital care so medical care can begin at the scene and continue en route to the hospital.

Air Evac Lifeteam was one of the first air ambulance services in the country to offer a membership program. Members pay an annual fee and, if they are flown by Air Evac Lifeteam for life- or limb-threatening medical emergencies, they do not have to pay for the flight. Memberships are valid in all Air Evac Lifeteam service areas, so members are covered while traveling through Air Evac Lifeteam service areas.

Annual memberships are $50 for an individual, $55 for a couple and $60 for a household or three or more.

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