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Ornge adds new high performance medically equipped aircraft to fleet

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Ornge, Canada's leading innovator in the field of transport medicine announced today it is purchasing six new Pilatus PC-12 Next Generation aircraft. The first four aircraft will commence service in 2009, the remaining two in 2010. This move is part of Ornge's ongoing efforts to modernize and make improvements to medical transports on behalf of Ontario patients. These new airplanes will provide medical services for patients requiring advanced and critical care during transport.

"When Ornge was appointed to take over operations of the air ambulance system in 2006, we immediately began looking at ways to improve the medical transport system and to make it more sustainable and efficient," said Dr. Chris Mazza, president and CEO of Ornge. "This new business model will not only enable us to contain the escalating costs associated with transport medicine services, but more importantly it will allow us to enhance and expand services for Ontario patients," he added.

The air ambulance program began operations in 1977 with a single helicopter at the Buttonville airport. The program has since grown to include 11 helicopters, 76 fixed wing aircraft operated under various service providers and 22 bases around the province, nine of which are staffed 24/7.

Ornge is currently recruiting for the following aviation positions: Director, Flight Operations, Chief Pilot, Manager Quality Assurance, Pilatus PC-12 Captains and Pilatus PC-12 First Officers.

"Ornge's decision to purchase our own aircraft is another important step in fulfilling our commitment to provide Ontarians with a world-class medical transport system," said Dr. Mazza. "We are looking for pilots and aviation specialists who share our vision and who live our values of Compassion, Collaboration and Innovation. We are very excited about this new milestone and look forward to being able to transport more of Ontario's patients," he concluded.

Ornge operates from a number of bases across the province and performs approximately 18,000 admissions annually. It coordinates all aspects of Ontario's aero medical transport system, the new critical care land transport program, and the authorization of air and land ambulance transfers between hospitals. Ornge is dedicated to the provision of high quality patient care through innovative transport medicine.

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