Native Air expanded its wings to provide wider, extensive coverage in the Navajo County region with the opening of a new base to better serve residents and visitors of Northeastern Arizona. The new base – Native Air 18 in Show Low – increases comprehensive coverage in the area as it will focus on scene and trauma-related calls within surrounding communities assisting fire and emergency medical service (EMS) teams with improved response times.
The new base adds to the Native Air program, with Native Air 9 already established in Show Low, and is part of Air Methods, the largest provider of air medical services in the United States. Both locations are equipped with Bell 407 aircraft and industry-leading equipment and medical devices. The aircraft and crew are skilled in high-altitude flight, perfectly situated for the mountainous terrain and rural scene calls. The Native Air crew achieved the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems (CAMTS) and carries the critical tools, medications, and supplies needed to provide ICU-level care while in flight.
“We are incredibly versatile in what we do,” said Account Executive Jeannette Hovey. “We are the only program in the region that carries blood in flight and is a key differentiator in the ability to save lives.”
Where seconds make all the difference in saving a life, the highly trained air medical team is capable of lifesaving interventions at the scene and in flight. In addition to blood administration, interventions can include advanced airway intervention; cardiac and hemodynamic (blood flow) monitoring; ventilator management; vasoactive medication administration to increase/decrease blood pressure; and other advanced surgical procedures.
The partnership with local fire departments provides for improved, comprehensive care. While the sister program, Native Air 9 located at Summit Healthcare Regional Medical Center, provides interfacility transports for patients needing to move between hospitals for specialized care. Native Air 18 will begin training with local EMS to provide on-scene care starting November 21.
“By training with our EMS partners, we’re producing more efficient and effective response times—arriving faster on the scene, following accurate and safe procedures, leading to smoother patient care,” said Regional Director Liz Groneman. “We couldn’t be prouder of the partnership we are building with our local EMS teams.”