From left: Care Flight Paramedics Jake Beck and Zac Hogan, Flight Nurse Travis Weber, CCT Tech Reilly Isaacson and Air Communications Specialist William Hehn appear with the new Care Flight 1 helicopter during an event in Reno.
Provided to the LVN
A new Care Flight 1 helicopter based at Banner Churchill Community Hospital in Fallon will replace a similar but older model helicopter later this winter. Care Flight 1 is one of four in Care Flight’s fleet of helicopters.
Care Flight, a service of REMSA Health, celebrated the recent arrival of a new helicopter that will begin service in late winter 2024 to ensure access to life-saving emergency medical care in rural Nevada. It will replace a similar, but older model helicopter.
A $5.3 million grant from the William N. Pennington Foundation funded the purchase of Care Flight 1, one of four needed rotor-wing aircraft. This addition enables the organization to invest in highly innovative safety features, clinical advancements and state-of-the-art air ambulance technology.
The grant is the largest made to REMSA Health, which is a not-for-profit organization that does not receive local tax subsidies. In the coming years, the other Care Flight helicopters will need to be replaced with new aircraft to ensure REMSA Health can continue to provide emergency air ambulance services to some of the rural communities it serves.
“On behalf of REMSA Health and Care Flight, I extend my deepest gratitude to the William N. Pennington Foundation for their generous support of our Care Flight program and sustaining rural healthcare for those in need,” said Barry Duplantis, president and CEO, REMSA Health. “We’re thrilled to celebrate with our providers, partners and community to commemorate this vital addition to our fleet. Care Flight 1 bolsters our commitment to safely providing clinically excellent, compassionate care to patients throughout our region for decades to come.”
REMSA Health and Care Flight staff past and present as well as healthcare partners and first-response partners gathered last month to commemorate the arrival of Care Flight 1.
Care Flight 1 is an Airbus H-125 B3E helicopter. This Airbus helicopter model is particularly well-suited for the high altitude, alpine environments and extreme temperature spans typical of the northern Nevada region.
The Pennington Foundation’s Mission Statement, written by the late William Pennington states that the foundation provides grants to Nevada-based organizations in the areas of education, community services, healthcare, and medical research.
“In the Foundation’s Mission Statement, Mr. Pennington says, ‘The Foundation supports organizations that help people and families persevere through difficult times,’” Duplantis said. “Our healthcare providers see people on some of their darkest and most difficult days. We are deeply honored to be entrusted by the Foundation to fulfill Mr. Pennington’s commitment to community service and to helping people persevere.”
Care Flight has transported and treated critically ill and injured patients across the region for more than 40 years. As a critical component of access to healthcare across rural Nevada and eastern California, Care Flight’s helicopter service transports approximately 1,500 patients every year, across a region of more than 50,000 square miles.