26-Jun-2011 Source: Centroc
â€œI was surprised and concerned to see that Central NSW does not have a 24 hour helicopter medical retrieval service,â€ said Cr Phyllis Miller, Chair of Centroc and Mayor of Forbes.
â€œThe current contract CHC Helicopters has with Ambulance NSW for medical retrieval services by helicopter is for 12 hours a day and only during the day,â€ said Cr Miller.
â€œWe all know accidents can happen at any time. I am thinking of kangaroos in the dark causing serious car accidents and complicated births at all hours of the night. The medical fraternity tell us that the best chance of a good outcome from a medical emergency is to get the requisite care in the â€œgolden hour,â€ or within an hour of the emergency,â€ said Cr Miller.
â€œA chopper out of Sydney, if it is available, is not going to get anyone Central NSW to the treatment they need within the golden hour. If the chopper is not available, the patient must be transported by road,â€ said Cr Miller.
â€œI canâ€™t imagine that it is a huge cost when compared to the number of people living in Central NSW. This is an area the same size as Tasmania with about half the population and a bigger GDP. You would think we would have a 24 hour emergency medical retrieval service. I was really shocked to hear that we did not have one,â€ said Cr Miller.
â€œI will be raising this with the Minister for health as I am getting calls from Mayors in the area about their concerns,â€ said Cr Miller.