Premier acclaims 40 years of helicopter rescue service

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has praised RACQ LifeFlight for 40 years of service to the Queensland community, describing the organisation as ‘one of our great institutions’.

Speaking at a function to celebrate the launch of the anniversary, and to mark 25 years of RACQ sponsorship, the Premier said LifeFlight provided one of Queensland’s most important services.

“My Government, through Queensland Health, is proud to support LifeFlight because our partnership delivers vital aeromedical services to those living, working or travelling in Queensland,” the Premier said.

“What began as single aircraft helicopter rescue service is now an incredibly important link in our critical care network supporting Queenslanders, especially in rural and regional communities.

“LifeFlight’s work helps bridge the ‘tyranny of distance’, performing almost 2000 life-saving missions across our vast and sometimes unforgiving landscape each year.

“At any time of the day or night, at least three LifeFlight doctors are in the air somewhere.”

In the 12 months to July this year, RACQ LifeFlight Rescue helicopters completed 1819 community-based assignments.

Australia’s largest community helicopter rescue service covers 41 local government areas across Queensland and into northern New South Wales. It provides an air ambulance service with three jet aircraft serving Queensland Health and Northern Territory Health.

LifeFlight also trains around 50 overseas doctors every year, from countries such as Finland, Sweden, Germany, the UK, Greece and Canada.

The Queensland Government annually invests $26 million in helicopter rescue services and, in the last financial year, invested $3.9 million in air ambulance services.

In addition, more than $25 million over 10 years is provided to LifeFlight for the supply of around 130 critical care doctors to Queensland Health.

“From the outback to the ocean, Queenslanders can feel safe because of LifeFlight.

“I would like to thank the wonderful staff, volunteers and ordinary Queenslanders who’ve helped to make RACQ LifeFlight Rescue one of our great institutions.”

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