Mission Health hires new provider for air ambulance program

Press release

From Mission Health

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (Feb. 7, 2013) – Mission Health has hired Era Helicopters LLC (Era), a subsidiary of Era Group Inc., to provide aviation services for MAMA (Mountain Area Medical Airlift), the health system’s air ambulance program. Mission Health signed a four-year contract with the aviation provider for service beginning Feb. 1.

“We selected Era to service our MAMA helicopters because safety is their top priority and they have a proven track record for quality,” said Jill Hoggard Green, PhD, RN, President of Mission Hospital and Mission Medical Associates. “As always, our primary concern is for the health and safety of our patients and the people we serve throughout western North Carolina. We are confident in putting Era on the frontline and entrusting them with the task of keeping our patients’ well-being in mind – from the ground to the air – to ensure they arrive securely at our hospitals.”

The Mission Health Board of Directors approved the contract with Era upon a recommendation from its Finance, Investment and Property Committee. Era was one of three companies that submitted bids after the health system’s prior contract with Air Methods Corporation expired in March 2011. Air Methods Corporation has continued to service MAMA on a month-to-month basis in the interim.

“We are delighted that Mission Health has selected Era to provide safe and immediate air medical transport to the people of western North Carolina,” said Paul White, Senior Vice President – Domestic for Era Group Inc. “Era is dedicated to being the best in the business. Our pilots, maintenance technicians and support personnel are all committed to safety and service excellence. ”

Aircraft pilots and mechanics are employed by Era. A nurse and paramedic from Mission Health provide on-board medical care during emergency flights. MAMA operates two helicopters, one based in Asheville and a second at Angel Medical Center in Franklin. The helicopters service Mission Hospital, including Mission Health’s five member hospitals and the 18 westernmost counties of North Carolina. MAMA helicopters also service parts of northeast Georgia and the Upstate of South Carolina as needed.

About Era Group
Era Group is one of the largest helicopter operators in the world and the longest serving helicopter transport operator in the U.S. In addition to servicing its U.S. customers, Era Group also provides helicopters and related services to third-party helicopter operators in other countries, including Brazil, Canada, Denmark, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Era Group’s helicopters are primarily used to transport personnel to, from and between offshore installations, drilling rigs and platforms.

About Mission Health
Mission Health, based in Asheville, N.C., is the state’s sixth-largest health system and the region’s only not-for-profit, independent community hospital system governed and managed exclusively in western North Carolina. In 2012 Mission Health was named one of the nation’s Top 15 Health Systems by Thomson Reuters – the only health system in North Carolina to receive this recognition.

Mission Health, which traces its roots in the region back to 1885, operates five hospitals, numerous outpatient and surgery centers, and the region’s only dedicated Level II trauma center. Its medical staff consists of more than 1,000 physicians and is certified in over 50 medical specialties and sub-specialties. Mission Health has seven Centers of Excellence: Cancer, Heart, Mission Children’s Hospital, Neurosciences, Orthopedics, Trauma and Women’s Health. Mission Hospital, located in Asheville, is the system’s flagship hospital and is licensed for 730 beds. It is the regional referral center for tertiary and quaternary care and is the busiest surgical hospital in North Carolina. It also includes Mission Children’s Hospital– the region’s only children’s hospital. Other Mission Health member hospitals include Angel Medical Center in Franklin, Blue Ridge Regional Hospital in Spruce Pine, McDowell Hospital in Marion and Transylvania Regional Hospital in Brevard. With approximately 8,800 employees and 700 volunteers, Mission Health is dedicated to improving the health and wellness of the people of western North Carolina. For more information, please visit mission-health.org.


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