Angel Flight offers assistance

Bel-Ami happy to take a plane.

REX Airlines has reduced multiple travel routes in regional areas of Australia, due to shortages of pilots, engineers, and parts. The reduced routes will impact many people, including those requiring medical treatment. Angel Flight is looking to fill this gap by offering to help those in need.

Angel Flight is a charity that coordinates free non-emergency flights to assist people in rural areas, in accessing medical treatment, not available to them due to vast distance and high travel costs.

Angel Flight has been around for 20 years, and coordinated over 54,000 flights, including routes that have recently been impacted. These are travel routes that Angel Flight services and will continue to service.

The route cuts also impact doctors and various health professionals who travel to rural areas to deliver medical services. Angel Flight have recently begun flying doctors into rural areas as well. Most recently via Vision Jet which significantly reduces travel times so health professionals can spend more time on the ground with patients.

Bel-Ami and his mother Mazambi are Angel Flight passengers that frequent medical appointments via the now impacted Mildura route. Photos: Contributed

“This service can help doctors reach their patients faster and provide care quicker, which is often essential when working in underserved areas,” Dr Ash Collins of Ochre said.

Angel Flight CEO, Marjorie Pagani said it was unfortunate that so many country air routes are being forced to close down, particularly when the rural and remote patients and their families have such limited facilities for both specialist and generalist treatment in their home regions.

“Angel Flight has been helping these people, without government support, for more than 20 years, and will continue to do so,” Ms Pagani said.

Dr Ash Collins

“Now we have expanded our service to transport health professionals, with the great help of Ochre Medical Group, and health students for placements, as well as stepping in to assist in natural disasters with flights, food and medicines, we are hopeful that we will get support to continue to fill these gaps in health care for our country friends in need.”

While the recent reduction in routes will have a huge impact on many people and communities in these regions, Angel Flight hopes to alleviate these challenges by coordinating these free flights for those in need of non-emergency medical treatment.