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Helicopter EMS. Help and Hope from America’s Oldest Joint Use Air Medical Program.

CareFlite's flagship is its helicopter service. Established in 1979 with one helicopter shared between two hospitals, CareFlite now operates 6 helicopter bases at Harris Methodist Fort Worth Hospital, Methodist Dallas Medical Center, North Texas Medical Center Gainesville, McKinney National Airport, Whitney and the Granbury Municipal Airport. Over 110,000 patients have been airlifted by CareFlite since 1979. CareFlite also offers hospital team specialty flights including balloon pump, ECMO, Impella, HROB (High Risk OB) and neonatal transports. CareFlite’s helicopter fleet includes 2 Bell 429's (above right) and 4 Bell 407GX’s (above left). CareFlite is the only service in north central Texas that operates under instrument flight rules during times of bad weather. This permits the rapid transport of patients to critical care facilities despite the weather. Only CareFlite has commissioned nine instrument approaches to hospital helipads throughout the Metroplex.

Each helicopter crew includes:
  • An ATP (Airline Transport Pilot) at the aircraft controls with thousands of hours of flight experience
  • A CFRN (Certified Flight Registered Nurse) with a minimum of five years emergency room and/or intensive care unit experience. CareFlite flight nurses are also certified or licensed paramedics.
  • An FP-C (Flight Paramedic Certified) with at least five years of progressive 911 experience

Air medical personnel are trained in trauma, cardiac, neonatal, obstetrics, pediatrics, and burn care, as well as lab proficiency skills. Minimum certifications are Advanced Cardiac Live Support (ACLS), Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) or Transport Professional Advanced Trauma Course (TPATC), Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS), S.T.A.B.L.E and Neonatal Resuscitation Provider (NRP).

Map above shows areas of 15 minute response times. The orange circle represents a 15 minute response area around CareFlite’s newest helicopter base in Whitney, Texas. CareFlite's helicopters serve more than 100 counties within a 150-mile radius of the DFW Airport. Outside that area, CareFlite provides Fixed Wing Air Ambulance Service on board its own King Air. For more information on CareFlite’s Fixed Wing Air Ambulance Service, click here.

Safe operations in and around the helicopter are essential, so CareFlite offers Landing Zone (LZ) Safety training to its First Responder Partners in the field. To schedule an LZ class, email LandingZone@careflite.org or call Rhett Draehn, Air Clinical Safety Coordinator 972-339-4242 or 214-347-1077.