Northwest MedStar to Open Base in Brewster, Washington

Northwest MedStar to Open Base in Brewster, Washington

21-Apr-2014 Source: Northwest MedStar

Northwest MedStar, the region’s critical care transport provider, is establishing an air medical base at Anderson Field Airport in Brewster, Washington. The full-time base will be opening in May, 2014.

“This is another opportunity for Northwest MedStar to collaborate with the local health care community throughout north central Washington,” said Eveline Bisson, program director for Northwest MedStar. “We look forward to providing more immediate critical care transport services to meet the needs of our shared patients.”

Northwest MedStar will position an EC-135 air medical helicopter and critical care flight crew at Anderson Field Airport. This will be Northwest MedStar’s sixth base.

“We’re very pleased to see Northwest MedStar come to our community,” stated Three Rivers Hospital CEO Bud Hufnagel. “This commitment will provide increased critical care access to the entire district and enhance our mutual objective of providing essential care to the communities we serve.”

Collaboration with local emergency medical agencies continues. “We have worked closely with Northwest MedStar since their inception and value our partnership in patient care,” said Cindy Button, EMT-P, director of service for Aero Methow Rescue Service. “We are honored to work with MedStar’s professional, competent and reliable staff and welcome them to our county.”

The announcement also received praise from Mid-Valley Hospital Administrator Mike Billing. “Northwest MedStar placing a base for helicopter critical care transport services at the Brewster airport will greatly enhance life-saving efforts for all residents living in the greater Okanogan region.”

Similar to the analysis done for the Moses Lake and Palouse base, Northwest MedStar continually reviews the needs of its coverage area and in collaboration with our hospital and EMS partners across the north central Washington region, determined a need in the area that is best served by a helicopter base.

“We look forward to the opening of Northwest MedStar’s new base in north central Washington,” said Kevin Abel, Lake Chelan Community Hospital CEO.  “Our patients have often benefited from Northwest MedStar’s critical care transport team. It’s been a privilege to work with their team for the past two decades, and we welcome the opportunity to continue and expand our partnership as we care for our patients.”

Northwest MedStar is leasing land from the airport and purchasing a 3,600 sq ft hanger at the airport. Northwest MedStar will also be placing a 1,400 sq ft crew quarters near the hangar.  The local base will be home to 14 flight crew members, Metro Aviation pilots and a Metro Aviation mechanic. The investment of this additional base, including construction and medical equipment (not including the aircraft), is estimated at more than $575,000. Annual crew salaries and benefits are estimated at more than $1 million.

“Having this new base closer in our region is crucial in improving the process of safely and quickly transporting our critical patients,” stated Linda Michel, administrator at North Valley Hospital in Tonasket. “Our community greatly appreciates Northwest MedStar’s dedication to health and wellness of the people we serve.”

With this announcement, Northwest MedStar operates six bases: Brewster, Spokane, Moses Lake, the TriCities and Palouse regions in Washington and a Missoula, Montana base that went operational on April 2, 2014.

Northwest MedStar, a Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems (CAMTS) accredited critical care transport program since 1996 and the air medical industry’s 2012 Program of the Year, provides high-quality care and transport to thousands of patients each year from its bases in Missoula, Mont., Spokane, TriCities, Moses Lake, Pullman and soon to be Brewster, Wash. Northwest MedStar’s primary service area covers Washington, northern Idaho, Montana, and eastern Oregon. Northwest MedStar also provides patient transport to Seattle and other facilities throughout the United States and parts of Canada. All flights are conducted by, and operational control over all aircraft is exercised solely by Metro Aviation, Inc. A division of Inland Northwest Health Services (INHS), Northwest MedStar offers a membership program that shields people from emergency air transport costs not covered by health insurance

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