Home Local News Flight For Life Fixed-Wing Aircraft to Visit Sulphur Springs

Flight For Life Fixed-Wing Aircraft to Visit Sulphur Springs




The media and public are invited to a special event which will be held on Thursday, April 27th at 10:00 AM at the Sulphur Springs Municipal Airport.  CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital – Sulphur Springs administration and board of directors are pleased and excited to share this new Flight for Life Fixed-Wing Aircraft with our community.  Please arrive at 9:45 AM setup/parking.

Flight For Life has added a new fixed-wing Pilatus PC-12/45 to its fleet of lifesaving aircraft. This will allowfor increased speed, efficiency and capacityof its air ambulance services throughout the multi-state coverage area.

“This new fixed-wing aircraft will open a world of possibilities and services to patients in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma,” said Stan Holden, Chief Executive Officer of Flight For Life. “Flight For Life’s fixed-wing service will serve as a connector for CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances Health System’s dedication to fiscal responsibility as a steward of community resources and leader of health care innovation throughout the country. With this aircraft, we will achieve greater economies of scale, extending the reach and mission of each of the system’s locations and services throughout a much larger area.”

In addition to what the helicopter ambulance service currently provides, thefixed-wing aircraft adds another facet to the patient-transport capabilities of Flight For Life.The fixed-wing aircraft will allow Flight For Life nurses and paramedics the opportunity to ensure the continuity of care for patients as they move from one facility to another, both within CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances Health System and beyond.

“Having a Flight For Life fixed-wing aircraft based in Tyler will establishgreater efficiencies and allow for improved response capabilities for Flight For Life’s ground ambulance counterpart, Champion EMS,” said Scott Kunkel, RN, MBA, NREMT-P, CMTE, FP-C, Chief Administrative Officer, Flight For Life. “Flight For Life will reduce the burden of ground-based EMS units tasked to transport patients long distances, thereby increasing the capability of Champion EMS units to respond to local 911 emergencies.”

The PC-12/45 has a pressurized cabin with a service ceiling of 30,000 feet, cruise speed of 327 miles-per-hour (285 knots), and a range exceeding 1,800 nautical miles (nm). Flight For Life can accommodate a combination of up to one patient, two pilots and three clinical crew members in the PC-12/45, however, standard configuration and crew are one pilot and two clinical crew. The Pilatus PC-12offers an incredible Flight Management System, room for a patient’s family member and extensive medical equipment.

“The fixed wing aircraft offers increased poor-weather capability, as well.” said Kunkel. “The fixed wing aircraft’s marginal weather capability exceeds even that of Flight For Life’s instrument-certified helicopter and includes the ability to fly in icing conditions. Range, speed, efficiency and capacity are more favorable for the fixed wing aircraft when the distance of transport is longer. For instance, the identified primary service area for each of Flight For Life’s four operational helicopters is roughly 100 miles from their bases in Palestine, Winnsboro, Longview and Wills Point; whereas the primary service area for the fixed wing aircraft will be 350 miles – and the range actually extends up to 1,800 miles, if required.”

“The increased range and reach of the fixed-wing aircraft will extend the mission of CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital – Sulphur Springs and CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances Health System by providing access to CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital – Tyler and the CHRISTUS Trinity Mother Frances Louis and Peaches Owen Heart Hospital as tertiary care destination facilities that provide specialty care medicine across a much broacher geographic landscape,” said Lindsey Bradley, FACHE, Chief Executive Officer for CHRISTUS Northeast Texas and Senior Vice President of Group Operations for CHRISTUS Health. “The increased range of Flight For Life’s services will be a force-multiplier for integrating a network of hospitals across Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and many other states that are linked under the CHRISTUS Health System.”



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