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Air Bravo to offer dedicated patient service for Ornge

September 13, 2012  By Carey Fredericks

Sept. 13, 2012, Mississauga, Ont. - Ornge, Ontario's provider of air ambulance and related services, has announced a new dedicated patient flight service for the Sault Ste. Marie to Sudbury corridor.

Air Bravo, a private sector air ambulance service which provides
patient transport services under contract to Ornge, is responsible for
delivering this service. The six month trial will provide airplane
service for patients with scheduled appointments for hospital treatment.
An advanced level of medical care will be offered on these flights to
meet the needs of patients requiring the service.

Ornge announced
the program in June and recently awarded the contract after a request
for quotation was issued to its contracted carriers.

"With the
launch of this trial, we are taking a significant step toward enhancing
patient care in Ontario's northern communities," said Ron McKerlie,
Interim President and CEO of Ornge. "We are happy to work with Air
Bravo, a valued private sector partner with a long record of service to
the patients of Ontario, in finding new ways to provide effective and
efficient coverage throughout the region."

Vanda Cooper, Director
of Emergency, Critical Care and Access at Sault Area Hospital said
"Regularly scheduled air transport for patients with appointments,
allows us to better plan their out-of-town treatments while freeing up
Ornge aircraft for emergent transfers. We are pleased to participate in
this initiative aimed at facilitating access to much-needed patient care
in tertiary care centers."


"We are pleased with the introduction
of this new service. It should greatly improve the timeliness of
medical transfers between Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie, which is better
for our patients, and helps the hospital system run more efficiently,"
says Dr. Chris Bourdon, the Chief of Staff, Vice President of Medical
and Academic Affairs, and an Emergency Department physician at Health
Sciences North/Horizon Santé-Nord.

During the trial, the advanced
level of care service will operate from Monday to Friday. The transport
of patients with scheduled appointments will be booked by the hospitals
in Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie through Ornge's Operations Control
Centre. The airplanes are configured to transport at least two patients
per flight.

This program will allow Ornge to free up its
dedicated airplanes and helicopters for more urgent and emergency cases.
Results of this trial will be monitored closely to determine if this
program is beneficial to patients and the hospitals.

announcement builds on recent improvements Ornge has made to enhance the
quality of service for Ontario patients. Last week, Ornge announced
that the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has approved its
application to fly helicopters to the U.S., allowing Ornge's air
ambulance helicopter fleet to fly in U.S. airspace and transport
patients to or from any U.S. destination.

Ornge has also
appointed Denise Polger as its first Patient Advocate, working with
patients and families to resolve their concerns about patient care and
service. She will also advocate for operational improvements based on
lessons learned from the patient complaints process to ensure Ornge is
guided by the principles of its new Patient Declaration of Values.


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