For Immediate Release
16 November, 2021
Jordan Brown MHA for Labrador West Calling for Improved Air Ambulance service with expanded capability in that will enhance efficiency for residents of this province.
The renewed call for action comes at a time when NAPE workers express ever growing concerns over the access to health services for people living in Labrador. The Labrador West MHA agrees that implementing the Health Accord recommendation will take up to ten years, but the issue Labradorians face is not a new one.
“We have seen the dust covered reports that told us we need a third aircraft, we know what government needs to do, time to do the right thing for this province, and ensure access to healthcare in this province is universal, not tiered as has been the norm for Labrador, and rural, residents,” said Brown. “Medical air travel is a public service provided to those who need it, when they need it. It is government’s responsibility to ensure that medical travel is publicly funded, and adequately resourced to ensure people in rural parts of the province maintain adequate access to medical services provided in other regions,” said Brown.
This is not the first time that the NL NDP has called for increased resourcing of medical travel services to Labrador Since taking office, campaigning for more acceptable funding of the Medical Transportation Assistance Programme has been a focus for Brown. The current system, often, sees individuals paying out of pocket for travel expenses.
“It is unacceptable to assume that Labradorians can just move closer to urban areas as a solution to the problem,” said Brown. “Labrador is an economic powerhouse for this province, and that is set to expand once the province begins mining minerals that are needed for electric vehicles – this province needs people living in this region. We cannot continue to be treated like an afterthought,” Brown said today.
The NL NDP MHA, and Independent members from Labrador have provided the following recommendations to the Co-chairs of Health Accord NL as a roadmap to a more equitable solution to meet the recommendations of the Accord:
1. Establish a single entity of government to oversee and operate the entire organization, staff, coordination and budget
2. Appoint a single authority for air and ground ambulance within the same entity of Government.
3. Lease third KingAir 350, based in St. John’s, to be available as needed and operated by Government Air Services Pilots or employees meet demands and outcomes and
4. Hire enough Government Pilots and Medical Flight Specialists complete with associated paramedics that would also be based in Labrador to provide 24 hour coverage.
For further information, contact Eddy St. Coeur, Director of Communications, NDP Caucus at 729-2137 (o), or firstname.lastname@example.org