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Skyservice Air Ambulance Rebrands As Skyalta

Skyservice Air Ambulance has announced they have re-branded and are now known as skyalta.

“Over the past two years we have acquired a commercial escort company and completed an acquisition of an aircraft operator and maintenance center that allows us to further solidify important aspects of our aviation operations” said Sam Cimone, President of SKYALTA.

“We have a new name, but the same mission, to deliver the art of critical air medicine each and everyday, whenever and wherever its needed” said David Ewing, Executive Vice President of Global Markets.

Skyservice Air Ambulance was established in 1989 and has a long history in the provision of high quality, accident free air ambulance flights on a global scale.

From bases in Montreal, Quebec and Toronto, Ontario, Canada, they have become known as one of the world’s most experienced air ambulance service.

Skyservice Air Ambulance was honored to have been nominated for the ITIJ Air Ambulance of the Year award. When they were nominated, it got them thinking of where they were and how they got there, sharing their past and sharing their future.

They launched the program in September, 1989, with their first aircraft a Cessna Citation II. Their mission profile was mostly rescuing patients located in remote communities of Canada, such as Iqaluit and Rankin Inlet.

From that initial experience, they realized that they had an opportunity to enhance their medical services delivery system, thus creating an association with McGill University. At that time, their medical director Michael Churchill-Smith, MD developed one of the first aviation medicine fellowship programs, which to this day are active and thriving.

By developing this unique program they were able to improve the level of care to their patients. Additionally, instead of bringing non-acute stable patients from the north, they began to transport high acuity critical care patients. They also developed neonatal transport capabilities. This occurred in January 1990.

They developed a knowledge of the remote communities, so Canadian travel insurance companies turned to them to repatriate sick and injured patients that were out of country. They were one of the first companies in North America to supply this service to travel insurers. With the increased demand for quality air ambulance services for travelers, they reviewed the aircraft type in 1990; the aircraft of choice was the Learjet 24 and Learjet 25. They took the time to evaluate options and decided to proceed with the Learjet 35A. Over the next few years they purchased their fleet.

In 1992 they retired the Cessna Citation II, and in 1995 purchased their fifth and last Learjet 35A.

During this period they achieved many first milestones as a company:

  • One of the first air ambulance operators to meet all the aviation criteria to fly overseas in the mid-1990’s.
  • One of the first to transport a Neonatal patient from the Middle East to North America in the mid 90’s.
  • Their Learjet 35A fleet was one of the only providers that offered dual patient air ambulance transport in North America.

As the years progressed they continued to improve on delivering state of the art medical equipment and continued to push the envelope in medical transport for their patients and clients worldwide.

In the mid 2000’s they were one of the first air ambulance providers to transport a patient on an inter-aortic balloon pump for a flight duration time of over 3 hours.

Skyservice Air Ambulance was the first air ambulance provider in North America to become EURAMI accredited for Special Care in 2007.

In 2010, they continued to advance critical care aero medicine as the only air ambulance provider to transport a patient on two left ventricular assist devices (LVAD) pumps simultaneously from the United Kingdom to North America, so the patient could receive a new heart transplant.

In 2011, they were again called upon to transport a critically ill child from Japan to North America using Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO). Skyservice Air Ambulance completed these flights which were challenging and involved a team that could problem solve the challenges and evaluate the risk that all of the patients were exposed to.

More importantly they approach all of their patient transports this way to ensure that they manage both the patient and their clients risk safely and efficiently. As they continued to advance critical care air medical transport, in 2010 the process of fleet renewal evaluation began and in 2011 they purchased their first Learjet 45XR. Skyservice Air Ambulance was the first provider in North America that has a medically dedicated Learjet 45XR fleet.

In 2012 their second Learjet 45XR joined the fleet with their third Learjet 45 XR scheduled to join the fleet by year end. The new Learjet 45XR fleet are equipped to transport two patients on Lifeport stretcher systems. The interior was modified with a custom, certified medical cabinet that permits them to carry maximum medical oxygen supply for their high acuity intensive care patients.

Skyalta has invested heavily in patient care equipment for the future The renewal of equipment to Physio Control Lifepak 15’s to the state of the art T1 Hamilton Ventilators which improve patient ventilatory care during transport. The goal is not to just maintain their care but to improve their medical condition and treatment enroute to have an impact on the patients outcomes with a quicker and non delayed recovery.

As they continue to grow as Skyalta, they have welcomed their 31,000th patient on board. Their future is bright and with their investments in aircraft and medical equipment they will continue to remain an industry leader going forward.


Learjet 35 XA-DOC Performs Successful Emergency Landing At Toluca Executive Airport, Mexico

On a Feb. 7, 2019 takeoff from Toluca Airport, Mexico, on an organ retrieval mission, a Jet Rescue Learjet-35 XA-DOC, experienced a problem with its brake system. The pilot circled the airport and landed successfully with minor damage. The crew and retrieval team of 7 physicians are safe.

“Flight safety is our top priority. This is the first adverse incident experienced by our fleet in 20 years of operations. It will be dealt with in a transparent manner. We are thankful for the remarkable skill and calmness exhibited by our pilots. It clearly made a difference in containing the incident” said Carlos Salinas CEO/COO of Jet Rescue Air Ambulance.

“This matter will be investigated further by the Mexican Aviation Authorities and a complete report will be made available to the relevant regulatory agencies and to EURAMI, the Jet Rescue accreditation organization. Finally, I am humbled by the many people who reached out, as soon as the news broke out, to express their support and confidence in Jet Rescue during this time. On behalf of my family and employees, I thank you very much for standing with us. God Bless”. concluded Salinas.


FAI Accredited Preferred Provider by International Assistance Group

International Assistance Group, a worldwide assistance alliance expands steadily its number of accredited Partners & Preferred Providers. In less than 2 years, the new partnership model enabled IAG to grow by 70% its number of local Partners and Preferred Providers. Present through 61 Partners & Preferred Providers in 39 countries, International Assistance Group provides a stable and reliable network to independent assistance companies who joined its partnership program.

After a strict application process, this global alliance accredits Preferred Providers to help the Partners deliver high quality services to their clients and final customer. Even if most of the Preferred Providers are eminent medical assistance providers (air ambulances or medical facilities), the International Assistance Group recruits and also assesses roadside assistance providers, funeral companies or any other supplier of the assistance chain.

FAI Air Ambulance applied to become an accredited IAG Preferred Provider, after having been an IAG provider for years. “We are much pleased to announce that FAI has acquired the IAG Preferred Provider status following a successful assessment done by the IAG Accreditation Committee. The large number of missions given by the various IAG Partners to FAI in the 10 past years shows the trust placed into FAI, whose activity with IAG has doubled since 2008,” declared Cecile Hermetz, General Manager of International Assistance Group.

“It was only natural that FAI, a company with a similar growth profile and with a 10 years history of cooperation with the International Assistance Group and many of its individual Partners, would join the group in June 2013 as a Preferred Provider” mentioned Volker Lemke, CSO of FAI Air Ambulance.

Lemke expressed the importance of a dual compromise, “This relationship between IAG and FAI exemplifies the type of synergy that will seamlessly produce significant added value for the many clients we serve jointly, and help both organizations produce higher quality and grow more than they would separately.”

FAI is now one of the world's largest and best air ambulance providers but when the cooperation started in 2003 the two organizations had not yet achieved the significant international expansion and growth that they can now proudly demonstrate. In 2003 FAI had a total of three planes, was performing about 140 Air ambulance flights a year, and had a yearly turnover of EUR 2,4M. Now in 2013 FAI fleet of aircrafts has grown and diversified, for a total of 21 including 7 dedicated air ambulance jets, one of them is Challenger.

“We perform around 680 Air Ambulance flights a year for a EUR 28M turnover in the air ambulance sector. This growth was achieved while maintaining the corporate focus on quality, scope broadening and innovation that has characterized the company from the very beginning, and we recognize a similar development within the International Assistance Group,” stated Lemke.

The number of flights performed during every year by FAI for International Assistance Group Partners is increasing. Volker Lemke confided, “We are convinced that our partnership as a Preferred Provider will greatly enhance our already profitable partnership and want to express our gratitude and confidence to International Assistance Group and all its Partners.” The reliable and ever growing network is the most valuable tool offered to the independent assistance companies that are part of the International Assistance Group.

“After European Air Ambulance (Luxembourg) and Tyrol Air Ambulances (Austria), FAI is then the third Air Ambulance company to acquire the Preferred Provider status in Europe. We trust these Preferred Providers will help in meeting with our Partners transportation needs at its best,” concluded Cecile Hermetz, General Manager of International Assistance Group.

Learn more about FAI air ambulance on their company micro site on iPMI Magazine, click here.

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