On 24 June, Air Methods Corporation announced its acquisition of the four bases of Baptist LifeFlight, owned by Baptist Health Care (BHC) of Pensacola, Florida, US.
The four bases are located in Pensacola in Florida, Semmes and Greenville in Alabama, and Hattiesburg in Mississippi, where each one is home to a helicopter owned and operated by Air Methods. Prior to the acquisition, Air Methods staffed each location with five employees, including four pilots and one mechanic per base. As part of the purchase, 43 clinical Baptist employees joined the Air Methods team. In addition, Air Methods acquired substantially all of Baptist LifeFlight’s assets, including the programme name, branding and medical equipment.
Mike Allen, Air Methods president of domestic air medical services, explained: “Air Methods is honoured that Baptist Hospital has chosen to allow us to continue the proud history and tradition of this high-quality service to the community. As BHC’s partner in providing high-quality aviation services to the region, we now will have the opportunity to serve the Gulf Coast region through all facets of our air medical skill sets. We are proud that most of the clinical and management professionals from Baptist LifeFlight have joined Air Methods as we move forward in this new service model.”
Andy Terry, vice-president of revenue management at BHC, commented: “Air Methods has been a great partner to us for quite some time now. We believe this opportunity will ensure the longevity and viability of the programme we strongly believe in. With the resources Air Methods has to offer, the programme and employees will draw from a larger network for [the] future success of Baptist LifeFlight for many years to come.”
Baptist LifeFlight will continue to fly critically-ill and injured adult and paediatric patients to Baptist Hospital and Sacred Heart Hospital in Florida, Baptist South Hospital and University of South Alabama in Alabama, and Forrest General Hospital in Mississippi.