July 06, 2011 11:30 ET

Ornge: New Medical Helicopter Base to Serve Southeastern Ontario Patients

Ornge to Open New Facility in Oshawa

MISSISSAUGA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 6, 2011) -

Editors Note: A photo for this release will be available via Marketwire on the picture wire of The Canadian Press.

Ornge, the provider of transport medicine services for Ontario, is pleased to announce the opening of a new satellite medical helicopter base at the Oshawa Municipal Airport later this year.

The new facility, which will operate 24 hours a day 7 days a week, will be the home to Ornge paramedics, pilots and a new, state-of-the-art AW139 medically-equipped helicopter, providing critical care transport to patients throughout Southeastern Ontario and throughout the province.

"Ornge continuously strives to improve care for Ontario patients, and this new operation will help us enhance our coverage throughout this region," said Tom Lepine, Chief Operating Officer for Ornge. "A Southeastern base has always been in our long term vision, and we are delighted to be able to open this facility sooner than expected."

After a thorough review of operational, aviation and economic factors, the Oshawa Municipal Airport was the clear choice for the location of the new Ornge base. It offers a number of amenities essential to the effective delivery of service, including a NAV Canada control tower, nearby fire rescue with a two minute response time, twenty four hour fuel service, and radar coverage to 3000 feet.

"Oshawa is truly open for business and strikes gold, or should I say Ornge," said John Henry, Mayor of Oshawa. "Yes, the world's leading innovator in the field of transport medicine, Ornge, now includes the Oshawa Municipal Airport as their latest base of operation in Ontario. Where seconds mean saving lives, the Oshawa base will provide critical life saving service for our community, our region and Southeastern Ontario. Welcome Ornge to Oshawa, your new home."

In the coming months, a hangar at the Oshawa Municipal Airport will be renovated for transport medicine purposes. The official opening date has not yet been determined. Updates will be provided as they become available. Southeastern Ontario will also continue to be served by the Ornge critical care land ambulance base in Peterborough and rotor bases in Ottawa and Hamilton.

The opening of the satellite rotor base will complement the Ornge Transport Medicine Centre of Excellence, which will open at the Hamilton International Airport this fall. This facility, which is currently undergoing renovations, will be equipped to accommodate both rotor wing and fixed wing aircraft.


Ornge is the world's leading innovator in the emerging field of transport medicine, and operates from a number of bases across the province of Ontario and performs more than 21,000 admissions annually. It coordinates all aspects of Ontario's aero medical transport system, the critical care land transport program, paediatric 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.

Supporting Quotes:

"This is great news, not just for Oshawa residents, but for everyone in southeastern Ontario. We all know that time is of the essence with medical emergencies and having the Ornge medical helicopter base at the Oshawa Municipal Airport will ensure quick access to high quality medical care."

Christine Elliott, MPP for Whitby-Oshawa

"The opening of an Ornge helicopter base in Oshawa is great news for the city and the entire Central East LHIN. Adding this new resource to our region means we can get patients where they need to be faster. This is a huge win for our patients in Durham Region and throughout the Central East LHIN."

Dr. Randy Wax, Critical Care Lead, Central East LHIN

"We are absolutely delighted at Lakeridge Health that Ornge's new location will be in Oshawa. Access for our patients to this flying critical care service offers even safer transitions to the required level of care in a timely manner."

Lisa Shiozaki, Executive Vice President & Chief Nursing Executive, Lakeridge Health

"We are very pleased to hear that Ornge will be placing one of their medically equipped helicopters at the Oshawa Airport. Having the helicopter located in Oshawa will improve response times to the Regional Municipality of Durham and other surrounding municipalities. This is great news for the residents of the Regional Municipality of Durham and surrounding municipalities who may require access to this service in the future."

Richard Armstrong, Chief/Director, Durham Region EMS

Contact Information

  • Ornge
    Gannon Loftus
    Regional Media Relations Officer
    416-531-7577 or toll free: 1-888-229-8115