Sponsored byThe Association of Air Medical Services (AAMS)


Air Medical’s Love Hate Relationship with Health Insurance
Donna Miller, RN, EMSRN, CMTE, AMR Air Life Guard International Flying ICU

The rules of engagement regarding healthcare reimbursement are changing at an unprecedented rate. This presentation will raise awareness, describe the most commonly encountered reimbursement challenges, and presents some strategies to maximize the most favorable reimbursement patterns for the air medical transport industry.

Gone in 60 Days
Rebecca Oakley, RN, RBA, CMTE, EMT-P and Robert Swickard, EMT-P, MCCP, HealthNet Aeromedical Services

With only sixty days’ notice a large, university affiliated teaching hospital with more than 1,200 monthly ground ambulance transports unexpectedly parted ways with its long-time ambulance vendor. How will these patients be moved? Where is the starting point? Join us to learn an innovative approach to establishing a large scale, high performing ground transport operation in less than 60 days. We will share how the hospital and its aeromedical services partner worked together to ensure the smooth flow of patients across the region. We’ll discuss challenges, successes and misses including funding, staffing, asset acquisition, dispatch, supply chain and clinical team basing. This was not an easy venture, but it can be done. You CAN move from ‘no to go’ in 60 days!

Patients First – Not Competition: Making Our Patient Outcomes Better by Working Together
Jenn Killeen, MHA, RN, NRP, CMTE, Classic Air Medical and Karen Snider, RN, MSN, CFRN, CMTE, AirLife Denver

We are in this industry to help people – not to out-do our fellow flight services at the expense of our patients. Sometimes fierce loyalty clouds our vision and decision making abilities. Unfortunately, competition has gotten in the way all too often and we have failed to admit or recognize this. Sometimes there appears to be too much mud-slinging and not enough collaboration.

Quality Management: Turn “Best QM Practice” into “Best QM Program”
Susan Gidding, MHS, RN, RRT and Sarah Barber, EMT-P, FP-C, Life Flight Network

This session is intended for attendees who want to design and implement an effective Quality Management program for their medical transport service. While it is widely understood that a Quality Management program is required for accreditation from governing agencies such as CAMTS, the importance of QM spans beyond a mere certificate. In addition to lending credibility from the customer’s perspective, a comprehensive QM program also supports internal validation for employees. Reporting is improved through emphasis on transparency, just culture, and loop closure. Quality improvement is achieved by monitoring indicator data for trends, analyzing results with quality management tools, and executing Action Plans which are later evaluated for outcomes and sustainability. A crucial element includes sharing the results with the entire company, particularly executive leadership, in a timely manner. Ultimately, attendees will understand the key principles of a robust Quality Management program, why these principles are important, and how to apply them in the setting of their own service.

So Now You Are Responsible for Corporate Compliance: What Do You Do?
Linda Hines, RN, JD, CMTE, CHC, MedFlight

Understanding a corporate compliance program is important at all levels in an organization. Organizations come in all sizes-some are large with a compliance officer at their headquarters, some are hospital based and some are small. At times someone may become responsible for the corporate compliance program but yet they have had little training. This program will provide a foundation and then apply the content providing examples, tools, resources and real life examples. It is also important for leadership and board members to understand their duties and responsibilities surrounding corporate compliance.

Yes, You Can Write a Journal Article
Dawn Nahlen, Elsevier

This course is meant for the novice writer and outlines the steps necessary to prepare a manuscript for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.

So, We’re Awesome…Right?: A Quality Improvement and Risk Management Journey
Cathy Cormier, BSN; RN, ENC(C), and James Orchard, ACP, FP-C, Ambulance New Brunswick

Create a road map for proving your strengths by exposing your flaws. In a world where thinking you are ‘good enough’ and proving you are ‘good enough’ are two different things, join Ambulance New Brunswick (ANB) for a re-cap of their journey of self-assessment. Spawned by a published peer audit and a need for goal-oriented focus, the creation of ANB’s Air Ambulance Program Quality Management Guiding Document served to record achievements as well as increase risk awareness and targeted mitigation. Learn how you can apply these principles and strategies to your program before an external auditor does the job for you.

Stop the World, I Need to Get Off! Bringing Leadership into a New Day
Tom Allenstein, RN, MBA, CMTE, MedFlight

The entire world is changing rapidly around us. This is particularly true when you start looking at medical transportation. How we provide those services and the care itself is changing every day. Couple these changes with generational differences in the workforce and we need to examine how we manage these people. This session looks at what members of leadership need to know to adapt to these changes to lead our companies into the future.

Take the Money and Run…. Developing a Revenue Cycle Management Program that Works
Rebecca Werth, RN, MSN, MBA, APRN, FNP-BC, AeroCare Medical Transport Services, Inc. and Jason Cooper Stat Recoveries

An overview of reimbursement trends and the way to structure effective revenue cycle management in the midst of change.

There’s An App For That: Technologies to Enhance Organizational Communications, System Performance, and Safety
Robert Higgins, RN, NRP, MBA, PennSTAR – University of Pennsylvania Health System

Expanding roles and responsibilities of today’s medical transportation leadership diverts precious time away from traditional core mission functions. Expansion of ground transport operations, assisting/coordinating in transfer center functions, greater numbers of personnel, and increased travel obligations can result in leadership disconnection with staff, other members of the leadership team, and the transportation system itself. In this lecture, we will discuss and demonstrate several low- or no-cost ‘battle tested’ applications and devices which will help today’s busy program leaders to maintain situational awareness with their organization and effectively respond to dynamic changes in the system, whether they are in the office or on the road. The lecturer has no financial interest in any of these applications or devices; just first-hand experience as a customer/consumer.

What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There
Cody Winniford, EMT-P, CCP-C, FP-C, Baylor Scott and White Health

There is a problem in leadership selection and development, not just within the EMS profession, but in healthcare in general. Leaders are generally selected based upon their tenure in their organization and/or their functional expertise in their primary job (e.g. EMT, paramedic, nurse, etc.). The problem that this creates is that we select leaders for their drive, intelligence, and self-discipline, but then they are removed from that position because they lack basic social skills. This presentation will demonstrate a pathway to self-development for new and experienced leaders to enhance their effectiveness as leaders and that of their organizations.

Project MEARCCAT: Creating a Mobile, Emergency, Advanced Resuscitation, Critical Care Team
Robert Grabowski, MSN, APRN, CNP, AGACNP-BC, CPNP-AC, CEN, CCRN, CFRN, EMT-P, CMTE, Metro Life Flight

This session will discuss an initiative to utilize an existing, advanced practice led critical care transport team to create a highly mobile response team to mass casualty incidents (MCIs), in which upon activation, the team will be sent to the scene of the MCI and create a mobile advanced triage and treatment area to provide immediate life-saving interventions on scene to multiple MCI victims in the event of prolonged transport time. Additionally, this team can respond to emergency departments in order to augment the surge capabilities of that rural facility; bringing more physicians, nurse practitioners, and highly skilled nurses and paramedics to their emergency department to assist in emergent care, followed by assistance with organization and execution of high-volume transfers.

Can You Hear Me Now?: Communicating Across Multiple Forums and Generational Gaps
Michael Perkins, MBA-HCA, EMT-P, CMTE, MedFlight 

This presentation focuses on the importance of communication in today’s digital age. Participants will be provided with real examples of one program’s journey on increasing companywide communication across multiple platforms between different generational gaps. Additionally, participants will learn which approaches worked well and which ones failed. More importantly, participants will leave with real world examples on how to increase communication in their own organizations.

Common Legal Issues in Air Medical Transportation
Adam B. Kuenning, JD, LLM (cand.), Erickson & Sederstrom, PC, LLO.

This session will focus on several of the most common legal issues in air medical transportation. The session will begin with a brief legislative update on some of the primary laws and regulations applicable to air medical transportation. Subsequent discussion will focus on aircraft ownership/leasing mechanisms, operational considerations, and air medical payment and reimbursement.

Who’s At The Controls?
Bryan Peterson, RN, BSN, CCRN, CFRN, CMTE, STAT MedEvac – Center for Emergency Medicine

This session will discuss the challenges in managing the current workforce that often requires high levels of engagement and inclusion for managing day to day operations. Balancing the needs of staff, while still maintaining managerial control, is often difficult especially when the employees want to be heavily involved in all aspects of the program. This requires having meaningful staff engagement programs and activities to assure their needs are met and to have positive impacts on the patients and customers serviced. We will discuss how to maintain a strong management structure that allows for high levels of staff involvement and engagement to keep the organization moving forward with positive outcomes for all.


Crazy, Hot Hiring: Finding the Unicorn (or 2)
Jenn Killeen, MHA, RN, NRP, CMTE, and April Larsen, Classic Air Medical

There are multiple challenges in finding and hiring great people. Many factors influence hiring decisions and also the decision to become a transport professional. It seems as though the pool is diminishing, and that experienced and motivated professionals are fewer. How do we overcome this problem? We have a matrix and we designed a flight academy to help find AND develop those unicorns (high performer, motivated, and positive employees).

How to Successfully Ensure Your Stakeholders Have a Sense of Fierce Loyalty and Trust
Kristin M. Lingman, CMTE, Med-Trans Corporation

How loyal are your communities to the air medical industry? How much do they trust your individual program(s)? From a business development and marketing perspective – this course is designed to get at the heart of our customers and our communities to determine what is their loyalty to air medical industry and local providers? Also, what can we do as an industry to promote the very best characteristics of our business? We’ll discuss those characteristics and why some companies are so much better at displaying them than others. What do they do differently? And what are the things you can do immediately to bolster your program’s presence? We’ll take an in depth look at each of the key areas that affect air medicine and provide tangible ways to foster trust into our daily operations and galvanize a sense of unfailing loyalty to our program(s) and our industry as a whole. If done correctly, key stakeholders will be taking on Goliath to protect your program and you’ll begin to see the direct impact on your programs growth because of their actions.

Maintaining Positive Trajectory: Creating Successful Remote Base Leadership
Mike Perkins, EMT-P, MBA, CMTE and Todd Bailey, MBA, CMTE, MedFlight

This presentation explores the challenges many remote based air and ground programs experience while maintaining and developing local leadership, operations, and requests in an effort to complete safe patient transports. Join us as we explore program methods for base leadership and cultural unification when resources are decentralized among a larger geographic region. Furthermore, we will review opportunities for how “Base Leads” can be identified and empowered to enhance and standardize out-based crew effectiveness that matches the program’s mission and vision.

Media Relations 2.0: Are You Ready for the Unexpected?
Steve Gregory, Gregory Group Media, LLC

Are you ready for the unthinkable? Have you anticipated the crush of media? Whether your unexpected event happened in the air or on the ground are you prepared to get in the front of the story before it gets in front of you? Join award-winning investigative journalist Steve Gregory as he does a deep dive and candid discussion into media relations. Gregory offers a point of view not often revealed – that of a reporter digging to get the truth. He’ll use case studies to illustrate events that were well handled and some that fell short. Gregory was on scene within minutes of the fatal shooting of a TSA officer at LAX; he was also on scene hours after an Asiana plane crash in SFO that killed three school girls. Gregory’s presentations are interactive and he encourages participation from attendees. He’ll also help you up your game when pitching positive stories to the media. If you care about how your organization looks from the outside, in good times and bad, this presentation is for you.

Why Can’t I Be Involved: Family Centered Care on Transport
Katy Heslep, BSN, C-NPT, Nationwide Children’s Hospital

Family centered care is a dynamic approach to building collaborative relationships between healthcare providers and the families which they serve. The overall goal of family centered care is to improve overall health and safety of the community. In this growing community of first responders, it is important to recognize the benefits of the inclusiveness of patients and their families when providing care throughout the entire process from pre-hospital care to inter hospital care to admission to the receiving facility. Research has shown that the inclusiveness of family has significantly improved outcomes of overall health care. The presenter will show you how best to incorporate families into your care using specific tools to help ease the transition of the patient from site to bedside as well as the approach in having difficult conversations in a timely fashion using the family centered care approach.

Creating a Survival Challenge on a Budget and an Idea
Nathan Morreale, FP-C, NR-P and Deb Witte, RN, CCRN, University of Utah – AirMed

The presenters will discuss considerations for creating and developing an on-location, multi-agency, multi-day survival exercise with proper 360 planning, documentation, medical, and production support. We will share the way we brought together a concept for training and the multiple hurdles we overcame to make this project a success. We will share some funny stories about the original plans versus what really happened and why contingency planning and support is paramount to any successful training exercise.

Business – Program Development

Built Out of Necessity – Developing and Implementing a Critical Care Education Program
Mark Weiberg, FP-C, NRP, Allina Health Emergency Medical Services

In 2012, Allina Health Emergency Medical Services (AHEMS) found themselves at a crossroads. Current critical care organizations had discontinued their critical care ground operations and AHEMS was expected resume these services. This program will take the learner through our process of identifying customer needs, developing an educational program for clinicians and evaluating it for continued excellence in patient care.

How Group Think Can Destroy an Organization & Conflict Leads to Better Outcomes
Jared Sherman, CMTE, and Ted Galbraith, CFRN, NREMT-P, CMTE, Guardian Flight Alaska

It’s great when everyone agrees. Everyone is moving in the same direction and there is no dissension, but what if that ‘Kumbaya’ is preventing your organization from reaching its potential? This session will help you learn techniques and skills to utilize the diversity within your team. Identify and counter the group-think mentality while building a team that understands conflict can be empowering.

Business – Wellness

Let Me Tell You My Stories: Educating, Mentoring and Team Building through Storytelling
Tracy Rojas, MSN, CCRN, C-CPT, and Elizabeth Espinoza, MSN, RN, CPN, C-NPT, Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago

It has been written that storytelling is the greatest technology that humans have ever created. Telling stories is an effective way of transferring knowledge, skills and values from one person to another. Storytelling has also been shown to be a strong source of influence. In this session, storytelling will be differentiated from lecture and case studies. The participant will be introduced to the art of storytelling as a powerful educational, mentoring and team building tool and shown how the telling of a story can tap into emotion and imagination in a way that traditional strategies do not.

Assessing Fitness for Duty in the Operational Setting
Daniel Mollicone, PhD, Pulsar Informatics Inc.

Working long hours, high paced operations, and night work can all lead to fatigue risk that puts the success of the mission in jeopardy. There are several technologies available today that allow us to understand the fatigue risk profiles we encounter during our work shifts so that pre-planned mitigation steps can be implemented as much as possible. But sometimes the best plans aren’t always implemented, and we need a way to quickly assess our fitness to perform the task during our operational tasks. Through use of the Psychomotor Vigilance Test (PVT), a 3-minute behavioral alertness and vigilance test that has become the gold standard in sleep science, operators can now assess the relative risk level of a person at specific points in time. Having an objective measure of a person’s alertness level affords the operator an unbiased safety mechanism to institute various “day of” safety protocols to operate as safely as possible.