Ornge commits to ensuring EMS service in Thunder Bay

Ornge commits to ensuring EMS service in Thunder Bay

1-Feb-2013 Source: Ornge

Ornge, Ontario’s provider of air ambulance and related services, is reaffirming its commitment to patients in Northern Ontario by taking steps to increase staffing levels at its Thunder Bay base.

“We are pleased to announce this enhancement of what is a vital service in the northwest, given the vast geography and long distances between medical facilities,” said Dr. Andrew McCallum, President and CEO of Ornge.  “The new paramedic shift will allow us to improve our ability to respond on-scene with our helicopter, while continuing to meet the need for long distance transports with our airplanes.”

Ornge will add a third team of paramedics dedicated to performing transports on the helicopter.  This crew will complement the two fully staffed medically equipped airplanes that operate out of the Thunder Bay base.  The change will mean that each of the three Ornge aircraft in Thunder Bay – a helicopter and two airplanes – will have its own dedicated crew of paramedics, supporting 24/7 operations in Thunder Bay.

Starting immediately, Ornge will seek to increase staffing levels in Thunder Bay by recruiting and training additional paramedics.

“These changes won’t happen overnight, but we’re committed to demonstrating progress in the coming months by making the staffing levels in Thunder Bay a priority,” added McCallum.

This measure builds on recent improvements at Ornge, including the hiring of aviation executive Rob Giguere as the organization’s Chief Operating Officer, an improved patient relations process, the hiring of a patient advocate, and introduction of a new conflict of interest policy and a whistleblower protection policy.

Ornge, a not-for-profit organization, coordinates all aspects of Ontario’s air ambulance system, the critical care land transport program, paediatric transport program and the authorization of air and land ambulance transfers between hospitals.

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