medical air ambulance takeoff - Angel MedFlight


May 2, 2017

Recapping the ACMA National Conference Show. Angel MedFlight and Astronaut Mark Kelly Head to DC

BY Angel MedFlight
Astronaut Mark Kelly at the ACMA Conference in Washington DC ACMA National Conference

On April 19th, the Angel MedFlight team traveled to Washington DC for the ACMA National Conference for nurses and case managers. It was four days filled with education, interaction, laughter, and good times. We have attended the national show on many occasions – as well as many regional conferences – but this one in particular stands out as one of our favorites.

First and foremost, it’s always exciting for us to meet so many of the healthcare professionals that we speak to every day on the phone as we coordinate patient transfers for medical flights. It’s one of the few times that we get to show you in person how much we appreciate the hard work each and every one of you do.

While we’re busy at the ACMA National Conference booth handing out lotion, pens, and medical transport guides, it’s the human-to-human connections and hugs that we relish the most. We’re all in this together, and it’s such a great opportunity to meet for a few days to learn new things and get to know each other better.

For everyone who stopped by our booth to learn more about our air ambulance services, or to grab some of our show goodies – we thank you!  We will always cherish the smiles and good times as we captured fun photos with so many of you with our team and astronaut Mark Kelly.

As many of you know, Captain Mark Kelly is a member our team at Angel MedFlight, so we were especially honored this year that he was invited to deliver the keynote address. We wanted to share his story with you because it hits on so many key messages and lessons learned from his time as a fighter pilot in the Navy, his four trips into space as the captain and commander of the space shuttle, and his tragic ordeal with the attempted assignation of his wife and Congresswoman Gabby Giffords. It was an hour that traversed the entire spectrum of emotions, from excitement and laughter, to courage and hope.

In closing, we wanted to share an email that we received from one of the attendees – and a new friend that we met at the show, Colonel Bobbi Lafargue, or “Colonel B” as she’s called. If you were there for the ACMA National Conference Q & A session after the keynote, you might remember Colonel B’s comment to Mark that she was a Colonel in the U.S. Air Force AND graduated from Berkeley. (In reference to one of Mark’s earlier jokes)

A big thank you to all, and we hope to see you again soon at next year’s ACMA National Conference, or one of the upcoming regional conferences.


Reflections on Captain Mark Kelly’s ACMA National Conference Presentation from a Veteran

It is an honor to serve our country to ensure freedom. There are a few that have far exceeded their duty and serve as a role model to others.

On Friday, April 21, I met one of my heroes. Captain Mark Kelly served as a Navy combat pilot who later became one of our great astronauts. He presented at the annual meeting of the American Case Management Association.

Captain Kelly’s presentation “Endeavor to Succeed” addressed his greatest challenge. His wife and former Arizona Representative, Gabby Giffords, suffered a brain injury following an attempted assassination.

In his presentation, he shared the many difficult challenges that occurred during the initial phase as well as the continuous hardships for Gabby and all involved. He stressed the need to create the right team at the right time and place. He talked about Gabby’s team which included family, friends, and health care professionals.

This collaborative team is what the American Case Management Association stands for and strives to continuously build upon. I wish to express my gratitude to Captain Kelly, American Case Management Association, and the Angel MedFlight.

As a USAF nurse who served honorably in the 44th Medical Services Evacuation Squadron (MSES), Travis AFB, CA, I know the profound value of getting patients to the right medical team in a timely manner to ensure the best outcome.

To all involved in this meeting and Captain Mark Kelly’s presentation, I express gratitude. I am focused in helping create a greater collaboration within my nursing role in order to help patients, families, and community.




Additional comments from case managers about the conference and Mark Kelly’s keynote address.

“Amazing keynote session with Captain Kelly!” – Debbie Fish Kaye

“Really enjoyed the Keynote address with Captain Mark Kelly!” – Julie Price

“Captain Kelly was amazing, I laughed, I cried, so engaging.” – Kathy Wienhold-Scheerer

“What a wonderful conference so far!! Mark Kelly did a wonderful job!! The breakout sessions have been full of incredible information!” – Brenda Wagner

“Enjoyed the keynote. Mark Kelly is awesome.” – Dana Carr