About Us

REACH Air Medical Services, headquartered in Sacramento, CA, provides critical care air- and ground- transport service to communities throughout California, Nevada, Oregon, Colorado and Wyoming. REACH employs hundreds of highly trained nurses, paramedics, pilots and aircraft maintenance technicians to provide service to patients using their fleet of medically equipped helicopters, airplanes and ground ambulances.


REACH was founded by Dr. John L. McDonald, Jr., who dedicated his life to helping others through the enhanced delivery of emergency medical care. As a board-certified emergency-medicine specialist, he served at Santa Rosa, California, Memorial Hospital for more than 20 years, where he created the region’s first paramedic program for ground ambulances.

Dr. McDonald extended his belief in the importance of pre-hospital care to air medical transport and fought for the addition of a helicopter air ambulance in Sonoma County, culminating in his creation of REACH (Redwood Empire Air Care Helicopter) Air Medical Services in 1987.

REACH grew exponentially in response to the need for fast, effective and quality pre-hospital care in Northern California, adding bases in Vacaville and Concord in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as a communications center. By 2005, REACH had grown to seven bases and had established itself as a provider of cutting-edge medical care, performing the first GPS-aided air medical transport in the world and receiving CAMTS accreditation, underscoring the company’s commitment to safety. 

REACH continued expanding its coverage area through the 2000s, extending to Oregon, Wyoming, Nevada, Colorado, Missouri, Kansas and Texas, largely when it was purchased by Air Medical Group Holdings (AMGH), joining three AMGH-owned air ambulance companies: Air Evac Lifeteam out of West Plaines, MO; Med-Trans Corporation of Dallas, TX; and Eagle Med of Wichita, Kansas. A 2016 merger with California Shock Trauma Air Rescue (CALSTAR) created the largest network of air ambulance bases in California.

In 2018, REACH became a part of the Global Medical Response family of companies, enhancing its air and ground EMS portfolio and furthering the dream of Dr. McDonald of providing comprehensive pre-hospital care to patients. Today, REACH is serving thousands of rural and urban communities across the Western United States and continues its mission to provide care at a moment’s notice.