Air Ambulance Helicopter to get the Green Light

Finally it looks like the Air Ambulance based in Rathcoole is to get the go-ahead:

“Minister for Health, Simon Harris, TD, announced today (Friday) that a new aeromedical service in the South will be launched in the coming weeks following the signing of a Service Level Agreement between the HSE and Irish Community Rapid Response.
Welcoming the news, Minister Harris said “I am delighted that a new aeromedical service in the South will commence shortly. I would like to thank the HSE National Ambulance Service and Irish Community Rapid Response for its commitment in developing this Service Level Agreement and ensuring the necessary clinical and corporate governance arrangements are such that the new service will be safe, robust and sustainable.
The service will see the establishment of a charitably funded Helicopter Emergency Medical Service in the South, which will operate from Rathcoole Aerodrome, just northeast of Millstreet, County Cork. The service will complement the existing aeromedical services and improve aeromedical access to the South of Ireland …”

[read the full statement on the Department of Health website]

John Kearney, chief executive of Irish Community Rapid Response (ICRR), and pilot Capt John Murray, on board the new ICRR air ambulance at its launch last September in Kerry Airport.


In the Newspapers:

Ireland’s first community air ambulance to be airborne within weeks as HSE gives go ahead – The service will cost €2 million to run annually and is to be funded through community and donor contributions… [the Journal]

Air ambulance project set for take-off – After five months on the ground, Ireland’s first charity-funded air ambulance is finally set for take-off — with a promise of delivering pre-hospital emergency care within 20 minutes to those in need… [Irish Examiner]

Ireland’s first community air ambulance service to be active within weeks –  The charity Irish Community Rapid Response (ICRR) said Friday that it expects the service to be up and running “within weeks”. ICRR raised €400,000 for the construction of an air base at Rathcoole, where the helicopter will be based, and plans to raise €2 million a year to cover the ongoing cost of leasing the aircraft, pilot’s wages and fuel. Under the terms of a service-level agreement with the HSE the health service will provide the medical staff for the unit, which will be centrally dispatched according to need around the country by the ambulance service. It is anticipated that the aircraft will undertake up to 500 missions a year… [Irish Times]

Ireland’s first community air ambulance to be airborne within weeks – IRISH Community Rapid Response (ICRR) have welcomed the announcement  by the Dept of Health today that a service contract has been signed, meaning that Ireland’s first community Air ambulance will be airborne within weeks.
Welcoming the announcement, ICRR said it looked forward to working in strong co-operation with the Dept of Health and HSE National Ambulance Service (NAS) to deliver a world-class service which will save lives.
ICRR director and Baltimore native John Kearney has now urged the Department to follow the signing of the Service Level Agreement with a definite commencement date… [Southern Star]

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