The Royal Flying Doctor Service acknowledges and pays respect to the past, present and future Traditional Custodians and Elders of this nation.

Graphic: COVID 19: Responding to need

COVID 19: Responding to Need

12 Oct 2020

Since February the RFDS has been part of the front-line response to COVID.The Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) is part of Australia’s larger health system and considered an essential service.

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Equitable health access

Why is the Royal Flying Doctor Service needed?

Australia is a big place -- 7.69 million square kilometres big -- and with a relatively small population of @25 million people. 

Two thirds of our population live around the regional coastlines and the remaining third live across rural and remote areas -- sometimes more than a 6 hour drive to the closest township. 

Access to health services can be a problem. Services that are taken for granted in the city are routinely just not possible outside metro areas, and this creates real hardship for the families and communities living in the bush.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service works to reduce the disparity of health service access. We bring emergency medical and primary health services to those areas that don't have access. We make it possible for people to live, work and travel across this large continent.

flight map and bases
Man attending to patient next to plane

Aeromedical Emergency Services

We provide 24-hour aeromedical emergency services to country Australia. Accidents, injuries, heart attacks, premature labour -- we can generally reach anywhere within a 2 hour period.

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Primary Health Services

The RFDS is the GP for hundreds of communities in the bush. We provide regular fly-in fly-out GP, Nursing and Allied Health Clinics. From cradle to grave, we provide service to families for as many as five generations.

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Non-Emergency transportation of Patients

The RFDS plays a vital role in the transporting of patients - not just in an emergency. Examples include the transfer of a patient from a regional hospital to a tertiary hospital, or an elderly person traveling from aged care for a specialist appointment. This service, by road or air, is vital to country Australia.

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Research

RFDS peer-reviewed research gives us the capacity to hone in on the locations and health issues that require targetted interventions. The RFDS research team actively works with well established research organisations to improve health outcomes for those in country Australia.

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