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Flight for Life

Flight For Life is a critical care air medical transport service that provides helicopter transportation for patients needing critical care service within a 350-mile radius from Tyler, Texas. We serve over 120,000 square miles of Northeast Texas, Western Louisiana, and Southern Oklahoma, and transport over 1,500 patients each year. When needed, local law enforcement also enlists our aid during search missions. 

h145You can activate Flight For Life by calling (800) 441-8677. We operate helicopter bases at the following Texas locations:

  • Longview
  • Mount Pleasant
  • Palestine
  • Wills Point

FFL operates three types of Airframes: Airbus H 145 (EC 145), Airbus H 135 (EC 135), and Bell Helicopter 407GX. Flight For Life is a direct link to Tyler’s busiest Emergency Care Center at CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital – Tyler, seeing over 75,000 patients per year. CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital – Tyler is a licensed 402-bed acute care facility that includes a Trauma Center accredited by the American College of Surgeons, with 50 ICU beds, and serves as a regional referral center for Cardiac, Neurological, Obstetrical, Gynecological, Neonatal and Hyperbaric Oxygen Services.

Aviation, Airframe, and Powerplant maintenance services are provided and operated by PHI Air Medical LLC.


Our team includes a pilot, flight nurse and a flight paramedic who are specially trained to care for critically ill and injured adults and children. Every flight crew member is trained in the use of Night Vision Goggles, and all clinical crew members are required to maintain two national board certifications in critical care.Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems Logo

Each aircraft carries state-of-the art equipment:

  • Video laryngoscope for intubating difficult adult, pediatric, and neonatal patients
  • Mechanical CPR device
  • Hamilton T1 mechanical ventilator for adults, pediatrics, and neonates; capable of advanced modes such as APRV, PRVC, and neonatal CPAP in addition to CPAP and BiPAP.
  • Point-of-care ultrasound, for assessing for internal injuries
  • Monitors capable of transducing three invasive lines, continuous temperature monitoring, ETCO2, SpO2, 12-lead ECG, pacing, and defibrillation.
  • Hemostatic gauze, commercial tourniquets, and junctional tourniquets for controlling hemorrhage
  • IV fluid warmer to provide warm blood and fluids to the patient
  • IV pumps capable of managing six concurrent infusions; can bring additional pumps if required/requested
  • Full complement of neonatal and pediatric equipment (suction, OG/NG tubes, warming devices, airway equipment, and medications)

We carry four units of blood (PRBCs and plasma) and all Flight For Life crews are trained in the following therapies:

  • Advanced airway procedures including medication assisted intubation and surgical cricothyroidotomy
  • Chest tube placement
  • Arterial, central venous and umbilical line placement
  • Escharotomy
  • Maintaining Impella and LVAD cardiac assist devices in transport
  • Digital blocks for pain relief in amputations

Flight For Life can also bring the following specialty equipment to the patient, when notified in advance:

  • Intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP)
  • Fetal monitoring (capable of twin gestation)
  • BabyPod, a temperature-controlled environment for 2-7 kg infants
  • Capable of transporting and managing Impella devices in transport

For more information on how Flight For Life can work for you, please email Jim Speier, Marketing Manager at

Ground Safety Courses

For agencies interested in utilizing Flight For Life services, we offer a Ground Safety Course that includes our Flight Crew and aircraft coming on-site to cover the imperatives of Flight For Life procedures:

  • Activating the system
  • Preparing the Landing Zone
  • Ground operations

3rd Rider Program

Flight For Life offers a 3rd Rider Program where individuals who have completed a 2-4 hour educational course have the opportunity to spend a day with the Flight Crew on the aircraft.