GVR Report cover Air Ambulance Services Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Air Ambulance Services Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Type (Rotary-wing, Fixed-wing), By Service Model (Hospital-based, Community-based), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2021 - 2028

  • Published Date: Apr 2021
  • Report ID: GVR-1-68038-715-5
  • Number of Pages: 90
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2016 - 2019

Report Overview

The global air ambulance services market size was valued at USD 5.3 billion in 2020 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.0% from 2021 to 2028. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), chronic diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide and represent 60.0% of the total deaths. Nearly 80.0% of the deaths caused by chronic diseases occur in middle- and low-income countries. It is estimated that 49.0% of the U.S. population will be affected by chronic diseases by 2025. Cardiac diseases and stroke account for 30.0% of the deaths in the U.S. Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death globally.

U.S. air ambulance services market size, by type, 2016 - 2028 (USD Billion)

Stroke is the second most common cause of death worldwide. According to the WHO, it is estimated that by 2022, chronic diseases will account for 3/4th of the total deaths globally, out of which, 71% will be caused by ischemic heart diseases and 75% of deaths will be caused by stroke. India and China have a high prevalence of cardiac diseases. Chronic diseases, such as cardiac diseases and stroke, usually require an emergency medical response. Air ambulance services provide rapid response in case of such emergency medical situations. Air ambulances are equipped with advanced and innovative medical care for cardiac, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, and trauma patients.

There has been a drastic increase in global health expenditure since 1980. In 2012, the total global per capita healthcare expenditure was USD 6.5 trillion annually. The global healthcare expenditure is expected to reach USD 18.28 trillion by 2040. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) report (2012), the U.S. had the highest per capita healthcare expenditure (USD 8,362) and Eritrea had the lowest per capita healthcare expenditure. The Luxembourg government spent the highest amount per person annually on health (USD 6,906) and the Myanmar government spent the lowest amount per person annually on health.

It is projected that 9.0% of the global GDP will be spent on health by 2040. The per capita expenditure on health in high-income countries is projected to be USD 9,019. On the other hand, upper-middle-income countries are expected to spend USD 1,935.0 per capita on health. The lower-middle-income countries are projected to spend USD 507.0 per capita on health, whereas the low-income countries are expected to spend USD 164.0 per capita on health. An increase in per capita healthcare expenditure is expected to have a positive effect on the salaries of medical professionals, treatment facilities, and hospital administration and help reduce the cost of medical procedures and pharmaceutical products. The increase in per capita healthcare expenditure can aid in overcoming the problem of shortage of medical professionals and facilities. An increase in the availability of these resources is expected to contribute to the growth of the market for air ambulance services.

The presence of a large population pool over 60 years, which typically has a lower immunity level and are prone to neurological diseases, cardiac problems, cancer, and spinal injuries, is expected to be a high impact-rendering driver for the growth of the market over the forecast period. As per the WHO, globally, the number of people aged 65 or older is anticipated to grow from an estimated 524 million in 2010 to nearly 1.5 billion in 2050. The geriatric population is highly susceptible to diseases such as arthritis, heart attacks, stroke, osteoporosis, and obesity. Patients suffering from such diseases may require an emergency as well as a non-emergency ambulance service model. Hence, the increasing geriatric population is likely to result in the growth of the market.

Type Insights

The rotary-wing segment dominated the market for air ambulance services and held the largest revenue share of 76.8% in 2020. In the market for air ambulance services, the term rotary-wing is generally used for helicopters. The main advantages of helicopter-based air ambulance services are cost-effectiveness and quick response time. Helicopters serve patients in emergency situations especially when a quick response time is expected. Helicopters are a good substitute to ground ambulances as they can land almost anywhere, including roads, parks, fields, cramped urban areas, and paved areas. However, due to low fuel capacity, they have a short operating range.

The helicopter-based air ambulance can be used in a wide range of situations mainly dealing with emergency response. Hospitals use rotary-wing air ambulance services to transport the medical team to the patient’s location and then escort them back to the hospital. Commonly used helicopters for air ambulance services are Bell 206, 429, and 407, Eurocopter AS350, EC135, BK117, EC145, and EC130, Sikorsky S-76, and Augusta Westland 149 and 109. Some of the key players operating in this market are REVA Inc.; PHI; AirMed International; Scandinavian Air Ambulance; and Native American Air Ambulance.

Fixed-wing air ambulances can travel long distances as they have better fuel capacity as compared to rotary-wing aircraft. Aircraft with propellers are mostly used for short distances. Some propeller-driven aircraft are also known as turboprops and are sometimes used for long-distance and/or outstation travel. Business jets are used for longer distance service models and are capable of carrying more medical equipment and personnel as compared to helicopters. Moreover, fixed-wing aircraft can operate in unpleasant weather conditions without compromising patient’s comfort and quality of care. The ability to operate in adverse weather conditions and the rise in medical tourism are two main reasons that can be attributed to an increase in demand for fixed-wing air ambulance services. The use of a turboprop or a jet is based on the parameters of transport. Some commonly used fixed-wing air ambulances are Learjet 31, 35, and 36, King Air 200, 90, Pilatus PC-12, and Piper Cheyenne. REVA Inc., PHI Air Medical, AirMed International, Scandinavian Air Ambulance, Native American Air Ambulance are some of the key players operating in this market.

Service Model Insights

The hospital-based segment dominated the market for air ambulance services and held the largest revenue share of 79.9% in 2020, and is anticipated to witness a considerable growth rate over the forecast period. In a hospital-based service model, a hospital generally provides a medical team and partners with an aviation service provider for aircraft, pilots, and mechanics. The aviation service provider is required to have Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certificate and is paid by the hospital for the service model offered by them.

The first hospital-based helicopter service for civilians started in 1972 and currently around half a million rotary- and fixed-wing aircraft operate annually. Lack of specialty care and medical physicists in some regions has led to an increase in the use of air ambulance services to rapidly transfer patients to specialty hospitals.

Global air ambulance services market share, by service model, 2020 (%)

The community-based segment is anticipated to a witness considerable growth rate over the forecast period. In a community-based service model, an independent operator has a base set up in a community and serves various localities and service models. The operator has an FAA certificate and employs its own medical and flight crew. An increase in the need for access to healthcare in rural areas has led to the growth of community-based air ambulance services. In the community-based model, the income is obtained entirely from patient transfers instead of fixed agreements with hospitals. These service models are based on public donations and/or are donated by businesses. Service models are provided through a contract with private operators and community healthcare organizations. Air Evac Lifeteam is one of the biggest community-based operators.

Regional Insights

North America dominated the air ambulance services market and accounted for the largest revenue share of 52.0% in 2020. The region is expected to witness a considerable growth rate of 9.2% over the forecast period. North America has the largest number of air ambulance service providers, and the infrastructure required for air medical transportation is also easily accessible. In addition, the presence of favorable reimbursement policies also supports the growth of this region. Moreover, the presence of highly developed healthcare infrastructure is also expected to drive the market for air ambulance services over the forecast period.

In Asia Pacific, the market for air ambulance services is anticipated to witness the fastest growth over the forecast period. The presence of developing countries such as China, India, and Japan is anticipated to boost the growth of the market for air ambulance services in the region. In addition, the rapidly growing medical tourism industry in these countries can also be attributed to the increase in demand for air ambulance services in this region. For instance, as per the report on the Export Health Service model by the Directorate-General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics of India, in 2016-2017, India had 58,300 medical tourists on medical visas.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

Key players are involved in adopting strategies such as mergers and acquisitions, partnerships, and launching new products to strengthen their foothold in the market for air ambulance services. For instance, in September 2016, REVA majorly expanded its medical flight operations in the Caribbean, thereby providing direct emergency air medical assistance even in remote islands that have short runways.

Key players are investing heavily in research and development to manufacture technologically advanced products. For instance, in January 2016, REVA launched a new operations base in Schenectady, New York. The new base allows REVA to provide rapid response to medical missions in Europe and abroad. The new base also opened new opportunities with insurers and other leading facilities in the Northeast region. Some of the prominent players in the air ambulance services market include:

  • AMR

  • PHI Air Medical

  • Babcock Scandinavian Air Ambulance

  • Express Air Medical Transport

  • REVA, Inc.

  • Lifeguard Air ambulance

  • Acadian Ambulance

  • IAS Medical, Ltd.

  • American Air Ambulance

Air Ambulance Services Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2021

USD 5.8 billion

Revenue forecast in 2028

USD 11.2 billion

Growth Rate

CAGR of 10.0% from 2021 to 2028

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2016 - 2019

Forecast period

2021 - 2028

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD million and CAGR from 2021 to 2028

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

Segments covered

Type, service model, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Latin America; Middle East & Africa (MEA)

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; U.K.; Germany; Japan; China; Brazil; Mexico; South Africa; Saudi Arabia

Key companies profiled

AMR; PHI Air Medical; Babcock Scandinavian Air Ambulance; Express Air Medical Transport; REVA, Inc.; Lifeguard Air ambulance; Acadian Ambulance; IAS Medical, Ltd.; American Air Ambulance

Customization scope

Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analyst’s working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional & segment scope.

Pricing and purchase options

Avail customized purchase options to meet your exact research needs. Explore purchase options

Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2016 to 2028. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global air ambulance services market report on the basis of type, service model, and region:

  • Type Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2028)

    • Rotary-wing

    • Fixed-wing

  • Service Model Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2028)

    • Hospital-based

    • Community-based

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2028)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • U.K.

    • Asia Pacific

      • Japan

      • China

    • Latin America

      • Brazil

      • Mexico

    • Middle East & Africa

      • South Africa

      • Saudi Arabia

Frequently Asked Questions About This Report

gvr icn


gvr icn

This FREE sample includes market data points, ranging from trend analyses to market estimates & forecasts. See for yourself.

gvr icn


We can customize every report - free of charge - including purchasing stand-alone sections or country-level reports, as well as offer affordable discounts for start-ups & universities.

Contact us now to get our best pricing.

BBB icon D&B icon

We are GDPR and CCPA compliant! Your transaction & personal information is safe and secure.