Medical Evacuation by Air
What is it?
Emergency medical evacuation by air ambulance is provided to anyone requiring urgent care outside their community or outside Eeyou Istchee, or requiring emergency retrieval from the bush.
Who is it for?
This service is used by CMCs for anyone in Eeyou Istchee requiring urgent medical care outside the territory; it can also evacuate someone requiring emergency retrieval from the bush.
Where is it offered?
Emergency evacuation by air ambulance is available directly from the six communities that have an airport. For inland communities without airports, evacuations are available from the Chibougamau hospital.
If the situation warrants, helicopters can be used for communities without airports or for an evacuation from the bush.
What will happen?
If you or someone you care for is being evacuated from the CMC, the medical team there will request an aircraft and will inform the dispatcher of the nature of the illness, where you will be treated in the south, and if there will be an escort travelling. The air ambulance will fly to your community as soon as possible.
Once the plane arrives in your community, its medical team will go to the CMC to prepare you for transport, advise you of the transfer process, and then take you to the airport.
At the airport you will be transferred to the aircraft and properly secured for the flight. During the flight, the medical personnel onboard will ensure your comfort and safety.
Once the plane reaches its destination, you will be transferred to an ambulance and taken to the hospital, accompanied by the flight medical personnel and your escort (if you have one) until you are admitted to the receiving hospital.
How long does it take?
The shortest evacuation by airplane would be from Wemindji to Chisasibi, which would last approximately 60 minutes from one hospital/clinic to the other.
The longest evacuation by airplane would be from Whapmagoostui to Montreal, which would be approximately 2h 45mins of flight time plus transfer times on the ground by ambulance.
Evacuations from the bush by helicopter will vary depending on the location, number of people to retrieve, and the condition of the people being evacuated.