Local News

SEARHC turns medevacs over to private company

A Guardian Flight turboprop prepares to take off from Skagway's airport in June. The company is taking over all medevacs for the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium. (Image courtesy Guardian Flight Facebook page)

A Guardian Flight turboprop prepares to take off from Skagway’s airport last summer. The company is taking over all medevacs for the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium. (Image courtesy Guardian Flight on Facebook)

Guardian Flight takes over all SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium medevacs on Tuesday, Oct. 1.

Guardian, based in Utah, already covers night service for the Sitka-based medical provider. SEARHC operated its own medevacs 12 hours a day up until now.

SEARHC Chief Operating Officer Dan Neumeister says a contract signed last week puts Guardian in charge of all medical evacuations.

“Guardian will be responsible for providing services wherever our clinics are. So at Angoon, (if) you need to fly out on a float plane, they’ll be responsible for either providing their own float plane or subcontracting out and getting a plane, putting their people on it and going to get our patients,” he says.

SEARHC laid off the nurses who staffed their own medevacs.

Guardian is Alaska’s largest medical evacuation operation, with bases in eight cities, including Sitka.

Neumeister says turning all medevacs over to Guardian will be simpler and more efficient.

“We had tried to perform the services ourselves part of each day. And we found that that was not as effective, even though we had very dedicated employees providing the service,” he says.

SEARHC has cut several programs this year to save money.

Comments

Please read our comment guidelines.

Recent News

Yakutat off the air

pleasestandby_web
Yakutat is temporarily off the air. We've got our engineers looking into the problem, and we hope to have things back up and running shortly. Thank you so much for your patience, and we apologize for any inconvenience. more

Native language bill has personal meaning for Sitka family

Jessie Johnnie's speech was recorded by X̱'unei Lance Twitchell in September 2011. He asked her what students of the Tlingit language need in order to succeed.
Twenty Native languages, including Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian, became official state languages on Thursday, Oct. 23. For Sitka resident Heather Powell, the signing marked a personal victory for a member of her family. more