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Air Trek Air Ambulance Saves Another Life

An elderly woman suffers from septic shock while cruising off the coast of Haiti. The closest treatment available is in Miami; the day's sailing time will be too late. This case enabled Air Trek to help a retired lady.

After several days cruising she had mistakenly taken her husbands prescription medication and was suffering from septic shock. She required treatment within hours or she would suffer permanent liver and kidney damage. A call from the ships doctor put Air Trek on alert. Air Trek quickly developed a patient transport plan that included the US Coast Guard stationed in the Turks and Caicos Islands plus our Cessna Citation jet, staffed with two Captains, a critical care flight nurse, and a flight paramedic.

The cruise ship had just set sail from Labadee, Haiti for the 36 hour cruise to Port of Miami. Consultation between the ship's doctor and Jackson Memorial Hospital determined the days sail time would be too late and she needed an air ambulance ASAP!

While flying Air Trek's jet (set up as an ambulance in the air) from Florida to Providenciales International Airport on North Caicos Island, a US Coast Guard helicopter was dispatched from Grand Turk to the ship at sea. Landing on a cruise ship at sea in the middle of the night to save a life makes us all thankful for the highly trained and professional men and women of the US Coast Guard.

After landing and clearing customs Air Trek's quality air ambulance team quickly refueled and prepared for a time sensitive flight to Miami. The flight team heard the helicopter approaching well before seeing her and the noise and rotor wash reverberated as the Coast Guard pilot expertly touched down just a few yards from our waiting jet. Both medical teams quickly transferred the patient from helicopter to jet, and within minutes Air Trek's jet was taxiing for departure to the life saving care waiting in Miami.

Thanks to advance arrangements made by Air Trek's Flight Coordinators, they arrived at MIA where customs agents and a ground ambulance were waiting, ready to expedite clearance and transport to Jackson Memorial Hospital where a highly skilled medical team was ready to save another life.

As coincidences happen, this patient lived in Fort Myers, Florida just 30 miles distance to Air Trek's base of operations in Punta Gorda. It was a welcome surprise to have this nice lady stop in to visit; it is not often Air Trek gets hugs from patients saved from a ship at sea and flown for care in Miami.

Thirty six years of experience and thousands air ambulance flights have allowed Air Trek to participate in saving many lives at the speed of flight! Behind every memorable moment such as this, is a company and systems set in place to make sure that patient transports worldwide are carried out as planned.

Air Trek's foundation consists of a 36-year-old, family business whose formula for success has remained the same for years: Focus on being safety-centered while providing the ultimate in patient care.

Air Trek owns and operates seven aircraft including pressurized twin engine aircraft, Citation jets, and a Westwind II jet. Each aircraft is fully equipped and staffed to function as a flying critical care unit allowing us to provide the best care for our patients. Air Trek differs from other Air Ambulance services in that we own the aircraft, which enables us to have direct operational control of all aspects of the patient's transport.

The patient's family, friends, and pets may also travel aboard the aircraft at no additional charge, pending the availability of seats.

Air Trek's Flight Coordinators can explain the different seating capabilities for each individual aircraft - then design a personalized and specific plan to meet the transport needs for the patient and their family members.


Angel MedFlight Domestic and International Flights Up From Last Year

The month of May proved to be a busy one at Angel MedFlight, with both domestic and international transports up from last year.

Angel MedFlight pilots and medical crews flew cross-continents, from Mexico to England, with one flight transporting a patient more than 6,000 miles from Kuwait to Massachusetts, and another medical flight over 5,000 miles from Hungary to Texas.

"We've seen an increase in international transports and we're glad we have the capability to help so many people worldwide," said Rebekah Kanigan, Director of Business Development.

Domestically, Angel MedFlight flew in and out of 36 states last month. Florida continues to be the top sending state, while Texas is the top receiving state for transports. Notably, patients' ages ranged from the youngest patient, only 15 days old to the oldest at 98 years young.

The major reason for air medical transports in May was oncology related. Angel MedFlight transports patients domestically and internationally with many types of medical issues including, but not limited to, neonatal and pediatric cases, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, status post trauma, transplant recipients, respiratory illness, cancer patients and burn and wound patients.

Angel MedFlight anticipates another busy month in June as summer travel results in a higher number of illnesses and injuries.

Eurocross Turkey Appoints Cem Timurkan, Product Development, Marketing & Sales Manager

Eurocross Turkey, the leading assistance and third party administrator, based in Istanbul, is excited to announce the appointment of Cem Timurkan as Product Development, Marketing & Sales Manager, effective immediately.

Mr. Hans Biekmann, CEO, Eurocross Turkey commented, "Cem is an excellent experienced insurance and assistance marketing and sales senior executive, with previous successful posts at ACE Europe, Groupama and Europ Assistance. On behalf of Eurocross Turkey I would like to officially welcome him to the team."

In his position Cem Timurkan will head up the Sales and Marketing team and will be directly responsible for building new international and local relations with insurance and assistance providers. Tasked with brand expansion and service value Cem will be responsible for business development in a number of key areas.

Cem Timurkan added, "I look forward to directing my past experience and hands-on relationship with the industry to contribute towards Eurocross Turkey’s strategic vision and goals. Eurocross Turkey offers excellent and comprehensive solutions, and I am very excited to take on my new role. I look forward to working with the team here and help strengthen the company's leadership position in the market."

About Eurocross Turkey

Eurocross Turkey is your complete answer to the A-Z of cross-border health and travel related complications that may arise for tourists, business travellers and expatriates in Turkey. Delivering tailor-made bespoke assistance and TPA solutions on behalf of international insurance and assistance companies, whilst assisting individuals working and living in Turkey, Eurocross Turkey helps you navigate and access the Turkish healthcare system.

For More Information Please Visit the Eurocross Turkey Website at:

U.S. Employers Interested in Exploring Stricter Rules Around Health Benefits and Reference-Based Pricing As Part Of Health Strategy

While employee cost shifting remains the most prevalent technique in employers' health strategies today, there is growing interest in adopting new health tactics to mitigate cost and improve population health in the future.

According to Aon Hewitt's soon-to-be-published Health Care Survey of more than 1,230 employers covering more than 10 million employees, 52 percent of employers said their current health strategy is focused on traditional trend mitigation approaches, such as employee cost shifting. However, just 21 percent said this would be their preferred approach in three-to-five years.

Instead, employers are considering new tactics that are more requiring of employees to take action. In the next three-to-five years, more than 60 percent of employers plan to "gate" employees to richer designs, where employees are required to complete a "task" to access richer design options. About one in five employers gate their employees today.

"Gating strategies are becoming an increasingly attractive incentive technique among employers as they look to improve the health of their employee populations," said Jim Winkler, chief innovation officer of Health & Benefits at Aon Hewitt. "For example, employers may offer a basic high-deductible plan to their entire workforce, but make a richer PPO option available to those employees who complete a health risk questionnaire or biometric screening."

In addition, 68 percent of employers plan to adopt reference-based pricing—where employers set a pricing cap on benefits for certain medical services for which wide cost variation exists with no discernible differentiation in quality. Just 10 percent of employers have adopted reference-based pricing as a health tactic today.

"Despite the long-term promises of innovative strategies, employers are still gravitating towards existing cost control tactics because they can see immediate benefits," added Winkler. "However, these traditional cost-sharing approaches will not be as effective in the future, and employers will need to adopt multiple strategies to improve the foundation of how benefits are delivered, including funding, design, clinical and provider system changes."

Additional Plan Design Strategies

According to Aon Hewitt's survey, employers are also considering implementing the following tactics to mitigate health costs in the next three-to-five years:

  • 72 percent of employers are or will be reducing subsidies for dependents;
  • 52 percent of employers anticipate using unitized pricing—where employees pay per person and not individual versus family—up from 5 percent today;
  • 42 percent of employers are considering offering high-deductible health plans as a full replacement plan, up from 15 percent today;
  • 24 percent of employers plan to offer employees tools to guide decisions in plan selection and utilization, up from 19 percent today;
  • 92 percent plan to offer cost transparency tools, up from 49 percent today.

"The fundamentals of health care still matter, but employers are increasingly realizing that traditional approaches to mitigate health care cost trend need to be advanced," said Tim Nimmer, chief health actuary for Aon Hewitt. "Over time, plan design strategies will evolve to be more requiring of employees, and individuals will be held more accountable for their health and for using health care. At the same time, we see that employers are increasingly committed to providing employees with decision support tools that provide greater transparency around the cost and quality of care, so that individuals can make more informed health decisions for them and their families."

APRIL UK Launch New Personal Accident Plan

APRIL UK, the protection and health insurance specialist, has launched a new Personal Accident Plan, aimed at protecting those with active lifestyles from fractures and serious injuries.

Their new plan was launched in June 2014 and provides 21 fracture benefits paying out up to £3,000 per fracture. They have also included an anterior cruciate ligament injury benefit, which comes as standard on the plan and pays out up to £1,500. For those looking for more comprehensive accident cover, they can upgrade to the ‘PLUS’ plan which provides an additional 18 serious injury benefits, including permanent total disability, accidental death and loss of limbs, paying out up to £200,000.

Marketing Manager, Isaac Lam said that they had seen a stronger demand for personal accident cover in recent times, “With people leading increasingly active lifestyles and injuries becoming a common occurrence, it has made people have another think about personal protection cover.”

In particular, APRIL UK believe that their plan would appeal to the football and rugby communities, especially since they have added anterior cruciate ligament injury benefit.

“They see their friends injured on a weekend playing football or rugby, which may hurt their pride and keep them out of the game for a few weeks or months. But the real damage is the financial cost of the injury and how it can leave people seriously out of pocket.”

Self employed and trades people who need to be mobile are at greatest risk because they could see their earnings stop if they are not able to work. The APRIL UK Personal Accident Plan is available with 3 levels of cover, with premiums starting from just £5.70 a month. There is also an option to extend cover to include a partner and children, aimed at families who take part in regular outdoor activities and winter sports. There are no excluded occupations on the plan and it covers a wide range of sporting activities, however some extreme sports and pastimes are excluded along with accidents from motorbikes. Their policy document contains full details.

As with all APRIL UK plans, customers will receive free enrolment to the Best Doctors service as well as the APRIL UK Discount Portal.

Established in 1997, APRIL UK is part of the international APRIL Group headquartered in Lyon, France, which looks after six million policyholders in 37 countries worldwide. The group has a market value in excess of £776 million.

Travel Insured International Releases New Product Line

Celebrating its 20th year as the leading family-owned travel insurance provider to the travel agency & supplier community, Travel Insured International is announcing exciting product enhancements, including first-to-market benefits.

Following an in-depth market analysis and countless agent interviews, Travel Insured International has determined that many agents are overwhelmed by the sheer number and complexity of various travel insurance products being provided to them to offer to their clients.

Travel Insured International also determined that of the 4 retail insurance products that they currently offer in the marketplace, nearly 90% of all sales can be attributed to two products, with Worldwide Trip Protector garnering nearly 80% of all sales.

According to Jon Gehris, President & CEO, the company enhanced the retail product line to make certain that we build on the success of our top selling products, while continuing to simplify the insurance offering process for agents. 

Bupa Appoints Garry Fingland As Chief Information Officer

Bupa has appointed Garry Fingland to the position of Chief Information Officer. Garry joins from Serco Plc where he has been CIO since 2009, with responsibility for IT strategy, enterprise architecture, portfolio planning, security, corporate systems, and IT transformation.

Prior to this, Garry spent 17 years at the global drinks company, Diageo, in various roles, becoming IS Strategy and Governance Director in 2008. Garry will play a crucial role in further shaping and leading the next stage of Bupa’s information systems, technology and data development, to enable the company to deliver its Bupa 2020 vision.

Stuart Fletcher, CEO, Bupa, said, “I’m very excited to welcome Garry to Bupa – he brings a wealth of knowledge and experience, not just of IT, but of working and leading teams within large, diverse and dynamic organisations. He will play a crucial role in ensuring that information, systems and technology play a significant part in our future performance and growth.”

Garry Fingland added, “I’m delighted to be joining Bupa. The company’s purpose, culture and ambitions are inspiring, and I’m looking forward to making sure technology is pivotal in the achievement of Bupa’s goals.”

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