By Ashley Morgan
Phi Air Medical held their ribbon cutting ceremony November 1, 2023 at the Navarro Regional Hospital located at 3201 W. Highway 22 Corsicana, Texas 75110.
PHI (Petroleum Helicopters Incorporated) was founded in 1949 by Robert L. Suggs. In 1981, PHI introduced PHI Aeromedical Services—now called PHI Air Medical—one of the fastest-growing providers of EMS helicopter support in the nation. The independent company is based in Lafayette, Louisiana and provides service for the oil and gas industry, aeromedical services, pilot training, and aircraft maintenance. Their parent company PHI Inc. is recognized around the world by operators and manufacturers as the industry leader in helicopter maintenance support services. They have approximately eighty bases across the country including Arizona, California, Louisiana, Texas and Florida. PHI Med 6 previously was based at the Corsicana Municipal Airport since May of 2004. In 2020, the plans began to move their base to the Navarro Regional Hospital for better visibility and a faster response time. They finally got to the new base on August 31st.
PHI also has seventeen bases in Texas, from as far south as Victoria, TX and north to Denton, TX. The Base Supervisor and Flight Nurse in Navarro County is Larry Martin, who received his Associate Degree in Nursing at Tyler Junior College in Tyler, Texas. Larry became Base Supervisor in 2021 after applying for the position and began working with PHI Air in 2005. With twenty-one years nursing experience and eighteen years of flight time, he is well-trained in pediatric, high-risk OB, NRP (Neonatal Resuscitation Program), adult trauma and critical care. Larry’s Supervisor is Program Director Justin Ramm out of Tyler, TX. On their team in Navarro County are three paramedics, four nurses, four rotating pilots, and two rotating mechanics. Of the Nurses and Paramedics on the crew, they have a combined experience of eighty years. They house a spare helicopter at the Navarro County hanger and fly any patient young or old except for NICU patients in Isolette cribs. They carry all the necessary medical equipment, night vision goggles, and whole blood that has saved countless lives in Navarro County alone. They fly a Bell 407; a four blade, single engine civil utility helicopter that has up to a two-hour ten-minute flight time on a full tank depending on the weight of passengers carried. Their top speed is one hundred sixty-two mph and the crew riding usually consists of a Nurse, Medic, Pilot, patient and sometimes a parent if their carrying a child.
PHI Air Medical has remained well below the national accident rate average and was the first company to receive the prestigious Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award. They were the first company of its size to equip 100% of its aircraft with Night Vision Goggles. They have partnerships with facilities in Houston, Dallas, and others to fly specialty teams. They transport patients to Trauma, Stroke, and Interventional Cardiac Centers typically to Dallas, Tyler, Waco, and Temple. Flight times are anywhere from twenty-five to thirty minutes from Corsicana to Dallas. They also do prison transports out of Galveston, Texas. “Our goal is to take care of the Navarro County patients,” said Larry Martin. You can find them at 3205 West 22, Corsicana, Texas 75110, Flight Dispatch Number (877)435-9744, www.phiairmedical.com, or (903)519-5666. If you find yourself or a family member needing PHI Air Medical, rest assured they are one of the best in the country.