CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A not-for-profit health services organization headquartered in Charleston with bases all over the state is being recognized with an international award.

HealthNet Aeromedical Services, with their emergency medical transport services, has been named the 2019 Program of the Year by the Association of Air Medical Services (AAMS), beating out hundreds of services.

Clinton Burley, the president and CEO of HealthNet Aeromedical Services told MetroNews he believes the services his organization offers are more critical than ever.

Clinton Burley

“The need for critical care transport in a mountainous environment is always growing,” he said. “Additionally with the closures of rural hospitals, the need for medical helicopter transport is even more acute than it was when our program was formed in the mid-1980s.

“To be recognized by the Association of Air Medical Services as the 2019 Program of the Year is certainly a highlight for us. It’s a testament to what our front line teams deliver across West Virginia and central Appalachia every day.”

HealthNet Aeromedical Services is headquartered in Charleston, West Virginia and is a not-for-profit critical care transport system cooperatively owned and operated by Cabell Huntington Hospital, Charleston Area Medical Center and WVU Medicine, a release said.

The organization operates eight helicopter bases in West Virginia including ones in Martinsburg, Morgantown, Moundsville, Buckhannon, Millwood, Beckley, Lewisburg,and Huntington, along with bases in Prestonsburg, Kentucky, and Portsmouth, Ohio.

Burley said they are making a lifesaving difference all across the area, providing services to more than 4,500 patients a year.

According to a release, the Program of the Year award, sponsored by Airbus, recognizes an emergency medical transport service that has demonstrated a superior level of patient care, management prowess, high quality leadership through visionary and innovative approaches, customer service, safety consciousness, marketing ingenuity, community service, and a commitment to the medical transport community as a whole.

HealthNet Aeromedical Services has transported over 80,000 patients since beginning operations in 1986.

“It’s due to the nearly 500 professionals we have all across the system that are impacting our patients,” Burley said of the award.

“Whether it be an aircraft mechanic at a base or whether it is a communicator answering that initial call for help. Collectively these professionals are saving lives.”