16/11/2021 - 15:22

FMG, Flying Doctors partnership takes off

16/11/2021 - 15:22

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Fortescue Metals Group will supply two helicopters to the Royal Flying Doctor Service of WA in a bid to speed up hospital-to-hospital transfers across Western Australia.

FMG, Flying Doctors partnership takes off
The Fortescue Heli-Med Service will see two helicopters added to the Royal Flying Doctor's Service fleet. Photo: Fortescue Metals Group

Fortescue Metals Group will supply two helicopters to the Royal Flying Doctor Service of WA in a bid to speed up hospital-to-hospital transfers across Western Australia.

Two EC-145 helicopters will be added to the service’s WA fleet under the Fortescue Heli-Med Service announced today, which is hoped to increase the RFDS’ capacity to service critical health needs in the state.

It marks the first aeromedical helicopter service for RFDS’ in Western Australia.

The service which will seek to cover regional communities including Bunbury, Jurien Bay, Northam, Narrogin and Margaret River, as well as destinations closer to Perth such as Rottnest Island and the Peel region.

“We want to ensure that regional and remote communities across our state have access to vital services such as those provided by the Royal Flying Doctor Service in WA,” Fortescue chief executive Elizabeth Gaines said.

“I am pleased to officially launch the Fortescue Heli-Med Service in partnership with the RFDS, which will help meet the health needs of regional Western Australians now and into the future.”

The helicopters have an operational range of 500 kilometres and can reach speeds of up to 220 kilometres per hour, which RFDS WA chief executive Rebecca Tomkinson says will give patients a faster journey to hospital.

“In what has been the busiest year in our history, having additional capability in our fleet is vitally important to our life-saving service,” she said.

“The RFDS is proud to be partnering with Fortescue to provide this service for Western Australians.”

The helicopters will officially go into service in early 2022.

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