MedFlight Ohio, April 20, 2020 - Columbus, OH. April 19th marks 25 years since MedFlight opened its doors for service.
In 1995, Columbus-based Grant Medical Center and Ohio State University Medical Center consolidated LifeFlight and SkyMed, the hospitals’ helicopter critical-care services, into a new entity named MedFlight.
The merger of these two organizations would save millions of healthcare dollars annually by eliminating duplication and simplifying access to emergency transportation while maintaining high-quality care. Shortly after, in 1997, the company added Mobile Intensive Care Units (MICU) to the fleet of critical-care transport solutions, utilized for interhospital transport.
Since 1995, MedFlight has remained a non-profit organization and has transported over 125,000 critically-ill and injured patients in Ohio and in neighboring states. The organization now has bases in Chillicothe, Marysville, Pomeroy, Coshocton, Galion, McConnelsville, Portsmouth, Eaton, Jeffersonville, Columbus and Bellefontaine. Each clinical team consists of an experienced and highly trained nurse and paramedics, and aviation services are provided by Metro Aviation.
“We often meet Ohio community members on what is potentially the worst day of their life, and our teams have responded with passion, dedication and experience to each patient’s bedside for 25 years,” says MedFlight President/CEO Tom Allenstein.
“Whether it be a life-threatening injury or a critical illness, the residents of Ohio deserve to have an investment made on their behalf to ensure that safe, appropriate, and quality medical transportation services are provided in a timely manner. On our 25th anniversary of service, I want to sincerely thank all past & present MedFlight team members for choosing to serve in critical-care transport as their profession. Your investment of time, training, and compassion has made MedFlight the organization it is today.”
Dr. Howie Werman has served as MedFlight’s Medical Director since the organization’s inception. “This is a great time to thank our former patients, as well as their families, for entrusting their care to our teams,” Werman said.
At the request of first responders, MedFlight will respond to remote locations to assist with patient care and provide rapid transport to appropriate trauma centers. But the majority of their missions are hospital-to-hospital patient transports, where an ICU-level of care must be maintained in the air or in the back of the ambulance. Along with that, MedFlight participates in over 300 community events each year and allows first responders, nurses, and 911 dispatchers to spend a day with one of their teams as an observer.
“This is not just a job, this is a calling,” said Allenstein.
Grant Medical Center LifeFlight and Ohio State University Medical Center (OSUMC) SkyMed merged into MedFlight in 1995