VITALSIGNS CAREFLITE CELEBRATING 40 YEARS OF SERVICE TO NORTH TEXAS 6 C areFlite is a Texas, 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation sponsored by Baylor Scott and White, JPS Health Network, Methodist Health System, Parkland Health and Hospital and Texas Health Resources. CareFlite and its sponsors are nonprofit entities commit- ted to high-quality patient care and community service. CareFlite is the only, fully-integrated medical transport company serving North Texas. It offers medical transports in helicopters, an airplane and ground ambulances. It also provides wheelchair transports. Services are provided by over 700 EMS professionals who put the CARE in CAREFLITE. Established in 1979, CareFlite is the oldest joint-use air medi- cal transportation service in the United States. CareFlite began with one helicopter shared between Methodist Dallas Medical Center and Harris Methodist Fort Worth Hospital transporting about 20 patients each month. CareFlite recently replaced its entire heli- copter fleet with new Bell 429s and Bell 407GX aircraft at a cost of $35 million. It is believed to be the youngest helicopter fleet in the U.S. In 1980, CareFlite began operating a ground ambulance service in Dallas to support the helicopters and to provide non- emergency transportation to pa- tients in area hospitals. CareFlite’s Ground Ambulance Division has bases in the following counties: Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Erath, Hill, Johnson, Kaufman, Palo Pinto and Parker. CareFlite operates 911/EMS services in Balch Springs, SE Dallas County, Ellis County ESD No. 5, Hill County and Kaufman County. Today, CareFlite operates six helicopter bases in and around the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. The Bell 429 aircraft are equipped for flight under instrument conditions (similar to the scheduled airlines). CareFlite has FAA approved instrument approaches to area hospitals throughout North Texas. These approaches permit CareFlite to trans- port critical patients to the area’s trauma centers and other hospitals offering specialized care during poor weather conditions. CareFlite is the first non-governmental entity to undertake such a program in Texas. CareFlite helicopters are based at Methodist Dallas Medical Center, Texas Health Harris Methodist Fort Worth Medical Cen- ter, McKinney National Airport, North Texas Medical Center in Gainesville, Granbury Municipal Airport and Whitney. In addition to its helicopter EMS program, CareFlite also provides a King Air (fixed wing, twin engine, pressurized, high performance turboprop) air ambulance. This aircraft can be used for emergent transports in Texas and Oklahoma, long haul patient transfers throughout the con- tinental U.S., and is ideal for transplant programs needing to move patients, organs and/or transplant teams without delay. All CareFlite aircraft are equipped with blood products and chest compression machines. Since 1979, CareFlite has transported over 1,150,000 patients by air and ground. CareFlite’s Ground Division also exclusively offers Specialty Care Transport (SCT) and Critical Care Transports (CCT). SCT/CCT is an ideal service for a patient who needs an inter-facility transport with a higher level of medical care than can be provided on an ALS am- bulance but does not require the speed provided by flying. CareFlite responds to requests from hospitals, fire departments, EMS agencies and law enforce- ment within a service area of more than 100 counties in a 150-mile radius of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex containing more than seven million people. First held in 1982, CareFlite offers an out- standing annual emergency care education conference each May open to first responders and health care professionals. It has a medical service bicycle team for community events and a mounted team. CareFlite’s continuing edu- cation programs include year round certification courses at its Mabee EMS Training Center in Grand Prairie as well as the University of Maryland Critical Care Paramedic Course and the Emergency Medi- cal Dispatch course from the International Academy of Emergency Dispatch (IAED). CareFlite was first accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Services in 1995. Its Dispatch Center is accredited by the IAED. CareFlite offers a membership program that protects families against surprise or balance billing after transports. This program of- fers coast to coast coverage through affiliations with Air Methods and Halo Flight. The program costs $49 per year or less per household. CareFlite will celebrate its 40th anniversary at noon at AT&T Sta- dium on May 20, 2019. To register for this event which includes lunch or for more information about CareFlite, please visit www.careflite.org.