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Kosair Children’s Hospital unveils refurbished ‘Just for Kids’ Transport Team airplane

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (April 23, 2014): When a child is seriously ill and requires specialized care not available in his or her community, time is of the essence in getting that child to Kosair Children’s Hospital. Depending on the child’s location, the hospital’s “Just for Kids” Transport Team may use a specialized ambulance, also known as a mobile intensive care unit, a helicopter or the newly upgraded airplane.

The transport team’s 1980 Beechcraft King Air 200 plane is operated by Air Methods and transports more than 200 children each year to Kosair Children’s Hospital from throughout Kentucky and Southern Indiana. It has also flown to West Virginia, Florida, California, Colorado and Massachusetts. Air Methods also operates the team’s helicopter and is the largest medical air service provider in the nation.

The refurbished plane features a customized medical interior for transporting one pediatric patient and up to two infants. During transport, the nurse and respiratory therapist can provide advanced therapies, such as high-frequency ventilation, inhaled nitric oxide, neonatal whole-body cooling, surfactant administration, helium/oxygen therapy and effective pain management for patients of all ages.

The “Just for Kids” Transport Team is composed of 27 people: nine teams of three who rotate shifts and are on call 24/7. Each team has one respiratory therapist, one registered nurse and one emergency medical technician who can provide advanced therapies, such as high-frequency ventilation, inhaled nitric oxide, neonatal whole-body cooling, surfactant administration, helium/oxygen therapy and effective pain management for patients of all ages. Their advanced qualifications and training, combined with each unit’s state-of-the-art, life-sustaining medical equipment, create what is essentially a pediatric intensive care unit. As such, the team members are able to provide a variety of life-saving procedures during transport, including intubation, laryngeal mask airway, long nasal CPAP, needle cricothyrotomy, chest decompression, umbilical line placement, intraosseous needle placement, external jugular line placement and ventriculoperitoneal shunt management. The nurses and therapists have years of experience in pediatric and neonatal critical care and have received extensive training in disease and injury pathophysiology and pharmacology.

The refurbishing work to the plane was made possible through the Children’s Hospital Foundation thanks to support given by Speedway LLC (Speedway), which pledged $1 million to support the “Just for Kids” Transport Team.

The $1 million pledge comes from Speedway’s partnership with Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and the generous support of its customers, who donate at all Speedway stores throughout the Louisville area. This follows $1.5 million already pledged by Speedway to the Children’s Hospital Foundation to support the transport program as well as development of pediatric emergency services at the future Norton Women’s and Kosair Children’s Hospital.

 “Speedway has truly been a leader in stepping up and responding to the needs of the community,” said Lynnie Meyer, MSN, R.N., CFRE, executive director of the Children’s Hospital Foundation. “Thanks to their generosity, we’ll be able to better serve children who need to be transported to Kosair Children’s Hospital for life-saving care.

 “We thank Speedway and its customers for supporting our region’s children and their families when they need specialized pediatric medical care.”
“At Speedway, we care about the communities in which we live and work, and so many of our customers understand the impact of Kosair Children’s Hospital on their families and friends,” said Tony Kenney, president of Speedway LLC. “We understand that sometimes children in areas surrounding Louisville need to get to the hospital quickly to receive the care they need.

“We’re pleased to be able to support ‘Just for Kids’ Transport Team initiatives that make this possible.”

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About Kosair Children’s Hospital 
Licensed for 267 beds and located in the downtown Louisville medical center, Kosair Children’s Hospital is the region’s only full-service, free-standing pediatric hospital, and the only hospital in the Louisville area offering a Level I Pediatric Trauma Center. Kosair Children’s Hospital provides a complete range of services for children, including pediatric intensive care and one of the nation’s largest Level IV intensive care units for newborns. 

Located adjacent to Norton Brownsboro Hospital in northeastern Jefferson County, Kosair Children’s Medical Center – Brownsboro is the only pediatric outpatient center of its type in Kentucky, offering 365-day-a-year pediatric emergency services; a full complement of pediatric diagnostic imaging services, cardiology services, a full-service laboratory and a wide range of pediatric outpatient surgery services. When it opens in 2014, the new Norton Women’s and Kosair Children’s Hospital in St. Matthews will offer specialized pediatric emergency services, surgery, inpatient care and an expanded neonatal intensive care unit.

As regional facilities that treat more than 155,000 children each year who seek care regardless of their family’s ability to pay, Kosair Children’s Hospital and its sister facilities rely on support from the community. The Children’s Hospital Foundation raises millions of dollars each year to support programs, equipment and facilities, research, advocacy and education at these facilities. The Children’s Hospital Foundation raised $14 million in 2013 to support the mission of Kosair Children’s Hospital facilities. For more information, visit

About Air Methods Corporation (
Air Methods is the global leader in air medical transportation. The Air Medical Services Division is the largest provider of air medical transport services in the United States. The United Rotorcraft Division specializes in the design and manufacture of aeromedical and aerospace technology including aircraft completion services. Air Methods’ fleet of owned, leased or maintained aircraft features over 450 helicopters and fixed wing aircraft.

About Speedway LLC
Speedway LLC, headquartered in Enon, Ohio, is the nation’s fourth largest company-owned and -operated convenience store chain with approximately 1,480 stores located in nine states. Speedway is a wholly owned subsidiary of Marathon Petroleum Corporation (NYSE: MPC). For further information about Speedway, visit the company’s website at

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