Medevac flights from Kitikmeot being diverted to Winnipeg

Ongoing N.W.T. fire situation putting strain on Edmonton health-care system, GN says

Nunavut’s Health Department announced in August medevac flights to Alberta were being redirected to Winnipeg due to ongoing wildfire situation in the Northwest Territories. (File photo)

By Nunatsiaq News

Medevac flights from Kitikmeot region are being diverted to Winnipeg rather than flying to Alberta due to wildfires in the Northwest Territories, the Department of Health announced Wednesday.

The fires have disrupted medevac schedules, which has led to reduced flight and seat availability, it said in a news release.

Fewer available flights, coupled with the strain put on the Edmonton health-care system as many N.W.T. residents were evacuated to Alberta, led to the decision to divert medevacs to Winnipeg.

Kitikmeot patients already scheduled for medical care in Edmonton will not see their appointments disrupted, the department said.

Because medical travellers are being given priority, other travellers to and from Kitikmeot could see their travel plans rescheduled.

“The Government of Nunavut continues to prioritize medical travellers with critical health-care needs, ensuring they receive timely access to care,” the release indicated.

“Limited seat availability also means only Nunavummiut in critical need of assistance will be accompanied by a medical escort.”

The government is working with airlines to find “alternative transportation options” to accommodate medical and non-medical travellers, according to the release.

 

 

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(2) Comments:

  1. Posted by Nunavutmiut on

    I was a medical escort on a medivac and waited hours in the lobby for a hospital bed for the patient, Prayers for Kitikmeot people not to be medevac’d.

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  2. Posted by Taxpayer on

    Paving the Cambridge Bay runway is a project that has been put off for many years. We are now starting to see the effects of not having this infrastructure upgraded.

    Cambridge Bay has lost its gravel kit 737 jet service, and there are no turboprop aircraft that have the range and capacity to do a run between Edmonton and Cambridge Bay direct.

    This affects the entire region as there is a big bottleneck now in the regional schedule and routes, as CBay is a hub for flights east and west.

    If the Cambridge Bay runway was paved, newer 737s would be able to land direct from Edmonton without landing in Yellowknife, which would greatly improve things like medical travel in the face of the NWT Wildfire problem.

    If paving the Cambridge Bay runway is not a Climate Change adaptation project and need, I do not know what is.

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