AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Augusta University Health now has a permanent hangar at the Augusta Regional Airport for its AirCare Program.

“We bring AU’s world-class care to rural Georgia and rural South Carolina,” said Zachary Lancaster, the AirCare One Program Director.

The shelter will be home to the CSRA’s only hospital-owned medical helicopter, and it comes with a lot of bells and whistles.

“This building allows us to plant roots in the CSRA, allows us to have our own training and educational building here at base so we don’t have to commute back and forth,” Lancaster said. “It also gives the comfort of home.”

There are living quarters for the crew, rooms to train students and residents at the Medical College of Georgia, and much more space.

AirCare has been around since 2021, and was stationed at a small, temporary hangar before this.

“They need a great place to work, and live while they’re here, as well as the ability to maintain the aircraft and protect it,” said Dr. Phillip Coule, the Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of the Augusta University Health System.

And it now has room to grow, so the team can reach more people in the area that need medical help as quickly as possible.

“AirCare helps to extend that expertise from the Children’s Hospital of Georgia out into the region,” Coule said. “And being able to bring those critical patients back to Augusta and the Children’s Hospital of Georgia is an important part of what AirCare does.”

Dr. Coule said AU Health plans to expand the crew and equipment at the hangar in the future.

“The potential of expanding to either an additional helicopter or maybe even an airplane is one of the reasons that we put this facility at the Augusta Regional Airport,” he said.