HealthNet President Chip Sovick and MedFlight of Ohio President Rod Crane have worked together for more than a year. The locally co-owned emergency helicopter unit is the only one of its kind in the United States, according to MedFlight of Ohio's director of Business Development, Todd Bailey.
“What we're celebrating today is one year of operations as HealthNet and MedFlight share Portsmouth helicopter. What this has done is help the community serve the region with this particular aircraft, and it's the first in the country to do it - two competing air medical programs to come together for the benefit of patients,” he said.
The team is staffed with a highly-trained critical flight paramedic, nurse and pilot. The helicopter serves hospitals, EMS, fire departments and regional law enforcement agencies to transport critically ill patients from accident scenes and hospitals to acquire higher levels of trauma or critical care.
Bailey said they would be offering food and tours of the facilities and helicopter to the public, as the crews take people around the helicopter, showing them the controls and the equipment.
“We have exceeded our expectations in serving this community,” said Base Leader Louis Robinson. “The crews enjoy working here, the region has been good to us and we hope to continue the relationship for many years to come.”
One side of the shared helicopter features HealthNet, and the opposite side features MedFlight, and the unit is stationed at the Life Ambulance base.
“Life Ambulance is a community partner. HealthNet and MedFlight are operating the air medical component, but Life Ambulance have been an outstanding community partner,” Bailey said. “We want to say thanks to those people who made us very successful over the last year. Because of those first responders, we couldn't be successful.”