Ontario Investing in the Future of Ornge Air Ambulance
TORONTO — The Ontario government is renewing Ornge Air Ambulance’s fixed wing fleet with a new fleet of state-of-the-art aircraft. This investment in the future of Ornge will ensure it can continue to provide safe and consistent air ambulance services to all Ontarians, especially in rural and remote areas of the province.
“We are investing historic amounts to ensure every Ontarian can access urgent health care services regardless of where they live,” said Premier Doug Ford. “Today’s announcement is more proof that no part of the province will be left behind as we build Ontario for the future.”
The existing fixed wing fleet of eight planes was acquired between 2009 and 2010. With this funding, Ornge will replace the currently aging fleet with eight new planes so training can begin with paramedics, pilots, and aviation mechanics. The new fleet will help ensure crew and patient safety while providing patients with continued and timely access to emergency health care, including for Indigenous communities and northern and remote regions of the province.
“Investing in a new Ornge fleet will ensure Ontarians continue to have the best care, no matter where they live in the province,” said Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “These new state-of-the art aircraft are one more way we are providing people quicker access to urgent care, especially in rural and remote parts of the province.”
The government is also considering future Ornge fleet expansion for larger and faster aircraft to ensure Ontarians continue to have access to the safe, reliable and rapid service
Ornge provides for years to come. The new fleet will be procured by Ornge through an open, fair and transparent competitive procurement process.
Ornge provides a range of air paramedical services including moving patients between facilities, responding to emergency on-scene incidents and supporting health care in northern and remote communities.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Ornge helped to distribute and administer vaccines to the most remote areas of the province through Operation Remote Immunity and assisted with managing the hospital surge response across Ontario.
Annually, Ornge conducts approximately 21,000 patient transports, with the fixed wing fleet making up 15 per cent of total patient transport volumes.
Ornge currently operates 20 aircraft including eight fixed wing planes and 12 helicopters. The planes are used for longer distance transports and the helicopters are for shorter distances and for emergency on-scene response.
Ornge provides air ambulance services from 9 air bases across the province, with the fixed-wing bases located in Thunder Bay, Timmins, and Sioux Lookout.
"Ornge’s fixed wing fleet plays a key role in supporting health care within Northern, Indigenous communities. This is a welcome investment in ensuring rural and remote access to emergency health care for years to come."
- Dr. Homer Tien CEO, Ornge