WINNIPEG – A new rooftop helicopter landing pad has opened at the Health Sciences Centre.
It means patients who need to be airlifted from around the province can receive urgent care faster.
The official opening ceremony happened Monday morning and on hand were Kelvin Goertzen, Minister of Health; Helen Clark with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority; Dr. Perry Gray, HSC’s Chief Medical Officer; and Betty Lou Rock with STARS Air Ambulance.
“With this site open, it will be easier and faster for Manitobans to get the emergency care they need,” said Goertzen. “This partnership between the WRHA, HSC and STARS is a great example of health partners working together to make a real difference for patients, and further strengthens our health-care system.”
The helipad plan was announced five years ago and its on the roof of the Diganostic Centre of Excellence at HSC.
“HSC is Manitoba’s provincial resource for many adult and pediatric emergencies such as trauma, stroke, burns and neurosurgical care,” said Dr. Gray. “The ability to land right at HSC, with direct access to our specialists, will improve survival and quality of life for patients.”
The helipad is being seen as game changing for patients, but it is not unique to Canada.
Ontario has 86 helipads, Saskatchewan has three, Alberta has 66 and there are 32 in British Columbia.
There are other facilities in Manitoba that are certainly interested in having a helipad set up on or around them as well, Minister of Health, Kelvin Goertzen said
Helen Clark with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority said St. Boniface is a location that has been put on the table for discussion.
“I think like any other potential locations, we need to do an analysis for the benefits, cost benefits analysis, so we are doing that,” Clark said.
While the new helipad will be open for use on top of HSC, that doesn’t change the procedure for cardiac patients that traditionally have been transported to St. Boniface for the most part, and not HSC.
“They’ll continue to go directly to St.Boniface. There is a landing zone or heliport if you life, city of Winnipeg owned heliport on Tyne Avenue, which is where STARS currently lands for patients that need to go to St. Boniface,” Clark said.