The new Broome facility further extends the organisation’s capability in delivering the most effective life-saving aero medical care to the people and communities of Western Australia.

RFDS Chief Executive Officer Grahame Marshall said the Broome facility means the RFDS can continue to meet the increasing and changing need for aero medical services in the north of WA and will be able to respond even more quickly and effectively to people in their time of need.

‘The need for the Flying Doctor’s life-saving services continues to grow every year,’ Mr Marshall said.

Last year alone, RFDS medical and aviation crews aero medically evacuated over 1,600 patients from the Kimberley region, which averages over four people per day. This region is obviously a popular holiday destination for people from all over the world and at times unfortunately during holidays people sometimes have accidents in the water, fall off bikes or suffer snake bites and other emergencies which often need urgent medical attention.

The Flying Doctor is pleased to be there wherever and whenever needed around our vast state, 365 days a year.

Support from the public is critical in terms of assisting with the costs involved in replacing, maintaining, and fitting out the RFDS aircraft - and in purchasing the essential medical equipment required to save lives.

That is why every single person who makes a donation to the Flying Doctor Service is so important to us and our patients, because without your help we couldn't achieve the successful life-saving outcomes for our patients that we do.

In 2017, the RFDS WA is due to take possession of the first two Pilatus PC24 long range jet aircraft released globally, with a third expected in 2018. The PC24 is a worldwide game changer in the delivery of aero medicine. These jets will be capable of short landings and take offs on dirt and unsealed airstrips which is essential to emergency evacuations in many parts of Western Australia, including the Kimberley.

Additionally, with a greater internal space to accommodate three patients and quicker travel time, the PC24 will enable faster response times, increased capacity for carrying and treating multiple patients, and substantial operating efficiency gains.

Mr Marshall said this ground-breaking advancement in aircraft technology will be a quantum leap in the management of RFDS WA aircraft fleet, our service delivery model and footprint across WA, and the delivery of inter-hospital transfer patients, emergency evacuations and off-shore patient evacuations and retrievals.

We currently operate a fleet of 15 aircraft comprising of 14 Pilatus PC12s and one Hawker 800XP jet. Given the continued patient need for our services which drives the high number of hours our aircraft operate, and the huge distances they cover, aircraft need to be replaced after about 10 years.

After purchase RFDS aircraft are specially outfitted with the latest in medical and aviation technology, at a cost of about $800,000, and are flying intensive care units, operated by highly qualified medical staff and pilots who are the best of the best. ‘

The RFDS is as relevant and essential to all Western Australians today as we have ever been throughout our history.

The Flying Doctor provides emergency care, life-saving outcomes, and health treatment and advice to almost 70,000 people in Western Australia every year and has done now for over 80 years.

To donate to the RFDS call 1300 669 569 or check out www.flyingdoctor.org.au