Call for helipad at Condo Hospital

Lachlan Shire Councillors have recently renewed their investigations into the potential for a helipad to be constructed at Condobolin District Hospital.

Formerly located on the patch of land next to McDonnell and Cunningham Streets, the helipad was relocated to the Condobolin airport when construction on the Wiradjuri Study Centre began several years ago.

Health Services Manager at the Condobolin Hospital, Kevin Ryan, said a helipad located on hospital grounds would provide tremendous benefits for patients.

“Patients wouldn’t have to be double handled in the event they needed to be airlifted to another hospital,” he said.

“They wouldn’t need to be taken out to the airport in an ambulance before being [put in a helicopter].

“In situations involving spinal injuries, for example, being able to deliver patients straight from the hospital to a waiting helicopter would be an incredible advantage.”

Mayor of the Lachlan Shire, Des Manwaring, said although the aim was to be able to get patients directly from the hospital to a waiting helicopter, further studies still needed to be done regarding the possible location of the helipad.

“Aviation people will have to agree on a site that is safe, though the ideal is to get something as close as possible to the hospital,” he said.

“There may be a site on the northern side of the hospital that is suitable, but we will have to wait.”

The call for a helipad coincides with the NSW Health Minister, Jillian Skinner, opting not to reconsider the need for a 24-hour Orange based rescue helicopter until late 2012.

A campaign involving numerous local shires including Centroc, has since begun, with councillors, health professionals and community groups condemning the decision.

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