At its core, our mission is to ensure people everywhere in Maine have access to critical healthcare when they need it most. We do this by providing a statewide air ambulance service that transports critically ill and injured patients, following the highest quality of care and rigorous safety standards.
Our crew brings lifesaving equipment and expertise to emergency scenes and community hospitals throughout the state. LifeFlight complements and supports the work of local physicians, mid-level providers, nurses and local emergency medical services (EMS) in caring for the critically ill and injured.
LifeFlight is a non-profit organization that is jointly operated by Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems and Central Maine Healthcare Corporation. Era Helicopters, LLC of Coatesville, PA oversees, operates and maintains LifeFlight aviation services.
LifeFlight’s two helicopters, based in Bangor at Eastern Maine Medical Center and Lewiston at Central Maine Medical Center, cover the entire state, including offshore islands, remote mountains and wilderness areas. Both helicopters are staffed by teams of highly qualified critical care transport nurses and paramedics.
There are typically two ways to request (link to pie graph) LifeFlight’s services:
- INTERFACILITY Emergency and specialty physicians can call for the LifeFlight team whenever a patient needs critical care and rapid transport from a community hospital to a medical center with advanced capabilities.
- SCENE Local EMS providers, guided by supervising physicians and Maine EMS protocols, can call for the helicopter to come directly to an accident scene.
LifeFlight of Maine uses the strictest medical utilization criteria in the country to make sure every flight is medically necessary. Use of the helicopter is organized and managed in the same way emergency departments provide care to all of the people of Maine. When care is provided, the patient and the patient’s insurance company are billed for the service. Just as Maine’s hospitals provide service to all patients in need of care, LifeFlight’s services are also provided regardless of a patient’s ability to pay.
LifeFlight is Maine’s only emergency medical helicopter service and is licensed as a scene response air ambulance. When inclement weather prevents the helicopter from flying safely, our highly skilled flight crews are still in action, often headed to community hospitals or accident scenes via ground ambulances provided by Capital Ambulance in Bangor and United Ambulance in Lewiston. LifeFlight is fully accredited by the Commission for the Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems.