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Our Service Begins With You

At MedFlight911, we offer this promise to each and every one of our valued clients: "Our Service Begins with You."

That means from the moment you call our office we will:

  • Go above and beyond to help and serve you.
  • Make the process simple, easy and worry-free.
  • Take care of every detail so you don't have to.
  • Act as your partner and advocate throughout the process.
  • Treat your patient / loved one like family.
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MedFlight911 Blog

Air Ambulance Reality Show Coming Soon to a TV Near You

You can watch reality TV shows about pastry chefs, swamp loggers, Alaskan fisherman, and pawn shop owners. So why not air ambulance crews? After all, it's a high-stakes, fast-paced job. There's more than enough life-and-death drama to captivate viewers for an entire season of television episodes.

TNT obviously saw the potential. The network is planning to air six hour-long episodes of “Life Flight” beginning in early 2014, according to a story in the Hollywood Reporter. The show will follow the Life Flight teams at the Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center in Houston. Each episode will focus on the air ambulance pilots, doctors, paramedics, and nurses who perform life-saving medical procedures for patients.

Life Flight flies helicopter-based air ambulance missions, so it's a little different from what we do here at MedFlight911 (all our advanced air ambulance trips are via fixed-wing aircraft). But this series will definitely draw attention to the important work that air ambulance crews do each and every day, putting their lives on the line as they work to save the lives of critically ill and injured patients.

Of course, we hope that the presence of a television crew doesn't in any way interfere with that patient care, which should always be paramount, or jeopardize the safety of the crew or passengers. Hopefully, viewers who tune in will end up with a better understanding of the important work that everyone in the air ambulance industry does. I know I’ll be checking out the show when it does air next year!

One reason that a show like “Life Flight” is so exciting is that it will likely shine a positive light on the air ambulance industry. Too often, people only hear about air ambulances – both rotor-wing and fixed-wing – when a tragedy happens. While accidents are undoubtedly newsworthy, it’s also nice to see the good work that air ambulance medical teams and flight crews do every day to keep patients safe and healthy and to get them the care that they need getting some attention as well.

At MedFlight911, the deep satisfaction that we get from helping patients is what keeps us going every day. Attention and accolades are always nice, of course, but it’s the words of gratitude and looks of thanks that we receive from patients and their families that truly tell us the value of the work that we do.  For us, that's worth more than any TV show.

To find out more about MedFlight911's air ambulance services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation long-distance medical transport quote here.

Air Ambulance Doctors and Nurses Gather at Critical Care Transport Medicine Conference

This week, air ambulance doctors, nurses, paramedics, and other associated medical professionals will gather in Austin, Texas, for the 2013 Critical Care Transport Medicine Conference (CCTMC).  The conference offers a forum for those involved in medical transport – including physicians, nurses, paramedics, respiratory therapists, and allied health professionals – to come together and discuss important issues and developments in the field and gain a better understanding of caring for patients in critical care setting.

This year’s CCTMC runs from Monday, April 8 through Wednesday, April 10, and is presented by the Air Medical Physician Association (AMPA), Air and Surface Transport Nurses Association (ASTNA),  International Association of Flight and Critical Care Paramedics (IAFCCP), and St. Anthony Hospital.  Attendees can see presentations on a wide variety of topics related to critical care transport, including:

  • Managing combative or dangerous patients

  • Pediatric and neonatal transport

  • Ventilator management of critically ill patients

  • Transporting patients from Amish country

  • Transporting a total artificial heart patient

You can see a complete conference program here.

Industry conferences like CCTMC are vitally important to medical professionals like the nurses and paramedics who work with MedFlight911 air ambulance. Our day-to-day existence is so hectic and filled with high-stakes, long-distance transports, and the stress of caring for patients, that it can sometimes be a challenge to step back and look at the bigger picture. Taking a few days to spend time with colleagues from around the country, hear their struggles and challenges, and get updated on the latest trends in patient care and medicine, is incredibly valuable.

CCTMC and other conferences are also important to us because we're firm believers in the value of ongoing training and education for our air ambulance medical crews. That's why we want our crews to have advanced certifications like Certified Critical Care Registered Nurse (CCRN), Certified Flight Paramedic (FP-C), and Critical Care Emergency Medical Technician Paramedic (CCEMTP). It's also why we require 100 hours of continuing education for each of our air medical transport crew members each year. We want to be 100% confident that our medical team is able to provide the highest possible level of care to patients. That's the core of our promise to you, and it's vitally important that we deliver on that promise during each and every transport.

To find out more about MedFlight911's air ambulance services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation long-distance medical transport quote here.

MedFlight911 Air Ambulance Says Goodbye to a Special Patient: Stephanie Deasy's Story

On Christmas Eve, MedFlight911 air ambulance lost one of our very special patients to lung cancer. Stephanie Deasy was a 41-year-old mother of two who had been diagnosed with stage four lung cancer in the summer of 2010. Stephanie worked as a personal trainer and was active, fit, and otherwise healthy, and had never smoked in her life. Her cancer was an extremely rare type that strikes women in their forties with no history of smoking. At the time of her diagnosis, doctors gave Stephanie just six weeks to live.

Stephanie, who already had a strong commitment to natural healing and alternative therapies, didn't accept her doctor's prognosis.

“I was in complete denial,” Stephanie said in a video where she discussed her diagnosis and subsequent treatment. Her oncologist told her that surgery and radiation weren't options, and that chemotherapy would be grueling.

Rather than submit immediately to a harsh round of chemotherapy, Stephanie decided to try an alternative approach – medical tourism. She knew of a treatment center in Mexico, and she opted to go there to get the kind of holistic care that she didn't believe she could get in the United States. “I called on Thursday and by Sunday I was on the airplane,” said Stephanie.

At Sanoviv, a unique facility in Mexico that combines conventional and alternative treatments, Stephanie was able to focus on her entire well being, receiving care and therapy that prepared her to face the chemotherapy that she'd receive when she returned to the United States.

Stephanie spent a month at Sanoviv. After four weeks, it was time for her to return to her family in Virginia. That's where MedFlight911 stepped in. Stephanie crossed the border from Tijuana to San Diego, which is where our air ambulance team met her. At the time, her prognosis was still poor. Our medical crew helped care for her on the cross-country journey. Stephanie and her entire family were grateful for the sensitive, hands-on care she received during that long distance air ambulance trip, and they kept in touch with us after she returned home and updated us on her health and progress.

At home, Stephanie made an amazing turnaround and survived for another 18 months – far longer than her doctors in the U.S. predicted. She was even able to return to Sanoviv and share her story of healing with the medical tourism facility's staff and doctors, as well as other patients. At a time when more and more people are looking outside the United States for medical care and alternative treatments that aren't yet available in this country – medical tourism – Stephanie's story is truly an inspiring one.

Stephanie's illness was serious and ultimately, she lost her battle with lung cancer, passing away on Christmas Eve, 2012. We were deeply saddened to here of her death, but at the same thankful that we were able to get to know this amazing woman, who fought such a hard battle against her disease with grace and wisdom.

I encourage you to watch Stephanie share her heart-wrenching and inspiring story on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL2C81498449C55471

To find out more about MedFlight911's air medical transport services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation air ambulance quote here.

Beyond Medical Transport, Helping Patients & Families in Tough Times

Last week, I wrote about how MedFlight911 air ambulance was able to help a case manager resolve a difficult patient case. To recap, the case manager had a patient who had been in a serious car accident with her father. The dad had passed away, and the patient's family wanted to get her back to her home state so that she could be closer to her loved ones during her recovery. Finances were an issue, so we stepped in and recommended a medical motor coach as a more affordable transport option than a traditional air ambulance.

Helping alleviate the stress case managers feel when trying to figure out how best to get the patient to where he or she needs to go is one of the added benefits we provide. Obviously, our service is medical transport – providing medical care while getting the patient from point A to point B. But often, we end up providing so much more, like taking a huge burden off the case manager’s shoulders or, in many cases, being a shoulder to cry on for grieving family members.

Often, up to the point of transport, family members have been surviving on pure adrenalin, running in many directions at once trying to arrange the medical care and transport for their loved one. They often have not yet had time to process their own feelings, especially when the family member’s illness or injury was unexpected. When we transported the young boy who had been badly injured in a play accident a couple of years ago, for example, his mother travelled with us. She was the picture of composure until her son, settled into his stretcher on the air ambulance, dosed off to sleep. It wasn’t until then that she felt like things were under control, taken care of, and her emotions came flooding to the surface.

Our team was there for the mother as she started the grieving process, which she was able to do because she knew that her son was being taken care of by our team. This is the kind of service that you can't put a price on. Sure, the most important (and obvious) aspect of our job at MedFlight911 air ambulance has to do with the nuts and bolts of arranging a transport and making sure the patient gets the medical care he or she needs. But there's a more emotional component to our services as well. Because we're so experienced with helping patients and families, we're able to provide them with a unique kind of support. We know what they're going through, and we're able to lend a sympathetic ear – and sometimes a shoulder to cry on – when people need it most. When we're able to do that, it makes our job so much more meaningful and rewarding, because we can see how much it matters to the people who we serve.

Often, too, our patients experience benefits outside what would be considered our service of medical transport. The elderly woman who we transported from her home on the West coast to live with her son in Texas, for example, hadn’t had a good night’s sleep in years. But in the motor coach the rhythm of the road was so relaxing that she almost immediately fell into a deep sleep – the motor coach was actually a welcome respite from the hectic atmosphere of the nursing home, where the constant comings and goings of doctors and nurses made it impossible to get a good night's rest. The motion and gentle vibration of the motor coach lulled her into a 12-hour deep sleep, which she awoke from finally feeling rested (which greatly improved her outlook on what was a tough move for her).

So while being excellent at providing medical care while transporting our patients is our first and most important goal, going above and beyond that to provide the caring human touch – a shoulder for the family to cry on, the patient’s first good night’s sleep in years – is the reason why we’ve dedicated ourselves to this business.

To find out more about MedFlight911's medical motor coach services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligationlong-distance medical transport quote here.

Medical Motor Coach Offers Solution for a Case Manager in Need

Late last year, I took a call from a case manager who was in a pretty difficult – and emotionally challenging – situation. She had a patient who had been in a car accident. The woman was seriously injured and her father had been killed.

When I spoke to the case manager, it was immediately obvious that this particular case was really hard for her. I could hear the frustration in her voice as she explained the problem. The patient was in a hospital in the Southwest, but her family wanted to get her back home to the East coast as soon as possible, so that she could be closer to her family and other loved ones. It was just before Christmas, and everyone involved was struggling to deal with both the daughter's injuries and the father's death. To make matters worse, the patient's insurance company was refusing to cover the cost of an air ambulance flight. The family didn't have the resources to pay for the air ambulance out of pocket, and the case manager wasn't sure what to do next.

After speaking to the case manager for a few minutes and getting some more specific details on the patient's condition, I knew I had the answer. I suggested that a medical motor coach might be the perfect fit for both the patient's and the family's needs.

A medically equipped motor coach offers a more affordable alternative to an expensive air ambulance trip. Since this patient was medically stable, ground medical transport was an acceptable alternative. (Patients who are in more critical condition or need to travel internationally or get somewhere as quickly as possible are typically still better served by an air ambulance.)

Once I explained the medical motor coach option to the case manager, I could tell she was relieved. Here was a solution to her dilemma. Our team went to work right away, quickly arranging the transport so that the patient could be back with her loved ones for the holidays. MedFlight911 coordinated all the details, so the case manager and the patient's family had one less thing to worry about. In a matter of days, we were ready to transport the patient back to her home, so she could begin the recovery process.

Come back next week to read about what happened during this emotional medical motor coach journey.

Are you a case manager who is interested in learning more about MedFlight911's medical motor coach services? Please give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation long-distance medical transport quote here.

An In-Flight Medical Emergency on a Plane from Brazil Reveals the Importance of Medical Transport

What happens if you suffer an in-flight medical emergency? A story in the news recently likely raised just that question in the minds of many people. According to news reports, in January, a 25-year-old passenger on a flight from Brazil to the United States fell ill and died while in transit.

It's not clear exactly what happened, but apparently the Brazilian woman began experiencing medical distress while on an American Airlines flight from Sao Paulo to Dallas. A doctor who happened to be on board the flight attempted to treat her with the help of the crew, but they were unsuccessful. The plane made an emergency landing in Houston, but it was too late to save the passenger, who was pronounced dead shortly after landing.

Authorities went so far as to call homicide detectives to the scene in Houston, but there was no sign of any trauma. While the woman's precise cause of death wasn't released, it's certainly an alarming story. Deaths on airplanes are fairly unusual, but they're hardly unheard of – in September, a woman died on a Korean Airlines flight, and in June, a man on a Kenya Airlines flight passed away.

The odds of a dying while in flight are still incredibly small. But medical emergencies do happen while in transit. In the early days of air travel, flight attendants were all nurses, but that's no longer the case (though the crew of a commercial airline will typically have training in CPR). Sometimes, there's a doctor or other medical professional on board who is able to provide assistance in an emergency – but even medical professionals are sometimes reluctant to help for fear of liability.

So while the odds of a healthy person dying on a plane are incredibly small, a commercial airplane is not a place for a person who is sick or injured to travel alone. But because it's difficult to deal with a medical emergency on a commercial airplane, people who are very ill are urged not to fly, or even denied boarding by the airline. Fortunately, for those patients who must travel by air, there are alternatives.

Air medical escorts travel with passengers on commercial flights, providing assistance with lifting and transferring, oxygen, basic monitoring, administration of medications and basic hygiene. These trained medical professionals are with the patient at all times, and able to respond quickly if an emergency arises. The medical escort knows the patient’s history and medical conditions and is equipped with medical supplies and equipment in case an emergency arises.

For patients who are seriously ill or injured – or not able to sit upright (which is required for takeoff and landing on a commercial airplane), air ambulances are another medical transport option. These are specially equipped airplanes that are able to transport people with serious medical conditions. Nurses and paramedics monitor the patient throughout the flight, ensuring that they get to their destination safely.

At MedFlight911, our experienced team of air medical escorts can provide care for a patient while in flight, potentially averting a tragedy if they do experience a medical emergency. For people whose health means that commercial air travel is not an option, we offer advanced air ambulance services. If you or a family member is sick and needs to travel, don't take a chance. An air medical escort or air ambulance can provide comfort and peace of mind for you and your loved ones.

To find out more about MedFlight911's long-distance medical transport services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation air ambulance quote here.

We Need Your Support! Vote for MedFlight911 Air Ambulance on Ranking Arizona

Are you a previous MedFlight911 air ambulance client, or know someone who is? We need your help spreading the word about the services we provide! Please vote for us in Arizona Business Magazine's 2014 Ranking Arizona poll.

It’s easy to do, takes just a minute, and will really help us out! Here’s what we need you to do:

1)      Visit http://aznow.biz/ranking-arizona

2)      Make sure the button “To Vote Search by name” is marked

3)      Type or paste MedFlight911 in the box. Hit “Enter” on your keyboard.

4)      A dropdown menu will appear. Click on “Tourism\Aircraft Charter/Rental\MedFlight911 Air Ambulance”

5)      Enter your email address

6)      Click the “Cast My Vote” button

 

After you cast your vote for MedFlight911, you can vote for other Arizona businesses you support, and even request to have your own business added to the list.

Voting is open for another few months, so you have plenty of time to cast your ballots – but why not do it now while you’re thinking about it? Last year, the top-ranked companies were celebrated at an awards reception at the Arizona Biltmore Resort. Winners are also highlighted in a special issue of Arizona Business Magazine.

Why vote for MedFlight911 Air Ambulance? Because we truly believe that we provide the best long-distance medical transport service in Arizona. We are committed to helping patients and their families during what is often a difficult and stressful time. We're there every step of the way. And not to toot our own horn, but the many kind words that we've received from our customers lead us to believe that we're pretty good at what we do.

As always if you need information or are interested scheduling a transport, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation air ambulance quote here.

Thanks again for your support!

MedFlight911 Air Ambulance on Coping with the Loss of a Child

“There's no tragedy in life like the death of a child. Things never get back to the way they were.”

-- Dwight D. Eisenhower.

 

Few things in life are more devastating than losing a child. While the recent tragedies in Newtown, Conn., and Aurora, Colo., are still fresh in our minds, it's virtually impossible for someone who hasn't lost a child to understand the pain and grief that those families must be experiencing.

In my own career, I've had to respond to those kinds of scenes – situations where children have been killed – and it's always heartbreaking. And as advanced air ambulance providers we sometimes transport children who are seriously ill and facing death. Even our seasoned medical professionals have trouble not getting emotional during those trips.

Those are some of the reasons that MedFligh911 is a big supporter of Stepping Stones of Hope, a Phoenix-based non-profit that provides support, education and care to grieving families.

There is no right or wrong way to cope with the death of a child. Everyone grieves in his or her own way, and in their own time. But if you or someone you love is struggling to cope with the death a child, these tips may help:

Ÿ  Don't isolate yourself. For many people, grief is a lonely process, but some of that pain may be eased by turning to friends, family and support groups with whom you can talk openly about your feelings.

Ÿ  Allow yourself to give in to your emotions. Don't worry if it makes other people uncomfortable to see you upset or angry about your loss.

Ÿ  Don't feel that you need to put on a brave face or pretend that everything is OK. Denying your grief will not help you heal.

Ÿ  Ask for help, whether it's from friends, family, neighbors or co-workers. There are people in your life who want to be there for you, but they may not be sure how to do that. Tell them what you need, even if it's just something small.

Ÿ  Try using art, music, or writing to help you express and process your feelings.

Ÿ  Look for ways to honor the child that you have lost. Even small gestures, like preparing their favorite meal, can help you remember the person who is no longer there.

Ÿ  Know that you are not alone. There are others who have suffered a similar loss, and talking to them may help you move through your own grief.

Ÿ  Do something that you enjoy. Small pleasures – taking a hike, a massage, caring for animals – can help you manage your grief. Do not feel that you can never enjoy life or feel happy again. You can still find moments of happiness even while you are grieving.

If you live in the Phoenix area and are seeking additional support or resources after the loss of a child (or any loved one), I encourage you to reach out to Stepping Stones of Hope. They provide day camps for both kids and adults, outreach programs, and other support for families and individuals who are dealing with loss. We're proud to support this organization that does so much to help grieving families understand that they are not alone.

To find out more about MedFlight911's international air ambulance services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation air ambulance quote here.

 

A High-Stakes Worldwide Air Ambulance Trip: One Year Later

Last year, MedFlight911 air ambulance had the honor of participating in a high-stakes air medical transport from Lviv, Ukraine, to Boston, Massachusetts. Since it has been one year since that dramatic trip, I thought I'd recap the story here, in case you missed it the first time.

The situation: We received a call from a children's hospital in Boston. The doctor who called us explained that a terrible house fire in Lviv, Ukraine, had taken the lives of almost an entire family – grandparents, parents, and several children. Three children had survived the blaze, but they had life-threatening injuries. No hospital in their home country could offer the treatment they needed, but the members of their local community had come together to pay for the kids to travel to the U.S. to get care. Of course, we agreed to coordinate the transport.

The dilemma: A worldwide air ambulance trip is almost always more complicated than a domestic one, since you have to deal with crossing international borders, pilot duty restrictions, and other issues. In this case, the situation was even more complex because of the serious nature of the children's injuries and severe cold on the ground in Lviv. Tragically, as we worked to finalize the details of the transport, we learned that two of the three children had died of their injuries. With that in mind, we redoubled our efforts to save the other child, an 11-year-old boy who had burns over 99.5% of his body.

The transport: After a lot of international phone calls and coordination, the trip to Ukraine got underway. In addition to two sets of pilots, we also traveled with a specially trained pediatric medical crew. Once we arrived in Ukraine, the medical team set about evaluating the boy's condition and then getting him onto the plane – no easy feat in sub-zero temperatures with a patient in critical condition. Then, we took off for our 14-hour journey to Boston, with the patient in a medically-induced coma. Fortunately, the journey went smoothly, and our team delivered the boy to the doctors in Boston in stable condition.

The outcome: After arriving at the hospital in Boston, doctors went to work right away treating the patient's injuries. Tragically, the young boy was not able to win the fight for his life, and he died a month after arriving in Boston.

As tragic as this story is, looking back one year later, we are incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to be involved with this very special transport.

Read the complete story:

Ÿ  Part 1: The First Call

Ÿ  Part 2: Race Against Time

To find out more about MedFlight911's international air ambulance services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation air ambulance quote here.

Five Reasons You May Need an Air Ambulance

If you're lucky, you or your loved ones will never need an air ambulance. Unfortunately, it's possible that you'll find yourself in a situation where you need to call an air ambulance provider like MedFlight911 to find out about our services. Below, I've summarized five common reasons that people may need an air ambulance.

1. You suffer a medical emergency when you're in another country and need to get back to the United States. As a worldwide air ambulance provider, MedFlight911 is able to provide medical transport to and from the U.S. and other countries. If you're traveling abroad and get sick or are injured, MedFlight911 can help you get back to your home country and get the medical care you need.

2. One of your loved ones is ill and needs to be moved closer to their family. Today, many of us live far away from our closest family. That means that when a relative (often an elderly parent or grandparent) gets sick, it can be difficult to manage their care from a distance. Many of our air ambulance transports involve moving people so that they can be closer to their loved ones.

3. You are sick or injured and need medical care that's not available in your current location. You can get excellent medical care in most parts of the United States. But if you have a very serious or unusual health issue, it sometimes makes sense to travel to a hospital far away from your home, since they may be best able to treat you.

4. You are too sick to travel on a commercial flight. If you're very sick or have a serious medical condition, traveling on a commercial flight may not be safe – or even possible. Airlines can (and do) deny boarding to passengers they believe are too sick to fly. If you're seriously ill, you can save yourself time and hassle by arranging an air ambulance transport, rather than risk getting to the airport and having airline staff refuse to let you on the plane.

5. You need to travel from one medical facility to another, and the distance is too great to travel via ground ambulance. Typically, moving a patient from one medical facility to another requires a ground ambulance. But that's not always practical, and an air ambulance can be a good alternative.

At MedFlight911, we provide air ambulance transport for all these situations and more. Our goal is to help patients and their families get the medical care that they need in the location that they want. If you'd like to learn more about our air ambulance services, please give us a call at 888-359-1911. We're always happy to answer your questions.

To find out more about MedFlight911's advanced air ambulance services, give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation air ambulance quote here.

 

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Testimonials

  • S. L. CA

    Thank you for your hard work and tireless effort in getting my father back to CA. I truly appreciated MedFlight911's capabilities in getting him safely back to his home.
  • J. S. CA

    Dear WONDERFUL folks, First of all our hearts are overflowing with gratitude for the professional and compassionate way in which you have embraced our inquiries into your services. Thank you for all
  • F. Z. CA

    We appreciated MedFlight911's professional service from beginning to end. You delivered a high-quality, smooth and friendly service not only to my father but also to our whole family.
  • J. T. KY

    MedFlight911 is fantastic! There is a genuine interest in the customer and the family. Communication was informative.
  • Katlin E. OR | Patient

    MedFlight911, I wanted to thank all of you for helping me and my twin boys with our medical transports. Although the trip felt like it was just minutes in length,
  • R. N. Venezula

    One more time I would really like to thank you and your crew for all the help getting my father to Houston.
  • L. C. TX

    Just a note to say thanks for all that you did for our family this past week. MedFlight911 went way over board in helping with JT's transport.
  • A. R. Brussels

    At this level, one firm among those mentioned above, was offering noticeably a best quote: Medflight911.
  • H. W. GA

    MedFlight911's service was Excellent! I would highly recommend MedFlight911 to anyone. The planning was seamless.
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