Gama Aviation (LSE:GMAA), the global aviation services company, has opened a new purpose built base at Glasgow airport to support its contract with the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS).
The base will house Scotland’s national specialist transport and retrieval service (SCOTSTAR) for critically ill NHS patients and will be the first time anywhere in the UK that all the country’s national retrieval services will operate from a single, central base.
This provides the Scottish Government with the huge benefit of being able to combine the external expertise of Gama Aviation with the clinical care of its own services. SCOTSTAR brings together the Scottish Neonatal Service (SNTS), the Transport of Critically Ill and Injured Children Service and the Emergency Medical Retrieval Service, with the SAS, which co-ordinates the teams. The result is a single integrated national service with a sustainable multidisciplinary medical and clinical team, making best use of the range of air and road transport by providing immediate access to specialist aircraft and vehicles.
Gama Aviation has carried out air operations for the SAS since 1993 with its current contract due to run until 2020. The number of flights operated by the company has grown annually – last year Gama Aviation carried out 491 missions out of a total of 2,654 cases to which the SCOTSTAR teams responded.
Gama Aviation currently operates two Beechcraft King Air 200C fixed wing turboprop aircraft based at Glasgow and Aberdeen airports, along with two dedicated Eurocopter EC145T2 helicopters located in Glasgow and Inverness. This core fleet is supplemented when needed by Eurocopter Super Puma helicopters based in both Shetland and Aberdeen.
Ryan McGrath, Regional Manager Scotland, from Gama Aviation, said: “The contract with the Scottish Ambulance Service covers some of the most important missions we undertake as they can literally be a matter of life or death. Our investment in the new base will allow for a seamless incident response and patient transfer which is a bespoke service for Scotland. This highlights the advantage to our clients of pairing their own capabilities with our external aviation expertise to deliver a high quality, cost effective service.”
Gama Aviation has operations in 45 different locations in 17 countries across five continents, making it one of the world’s leading aviation services companies. Its services include: line and base maintenance; FBO services; engineering design; aircraft management; charter operations; training; and aviation and ground management systems.
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