Pilatus Aircraft handed over the very first PC-24 jet with medevac interior to the Royal Flying Doctor Service on 26 November.
The aircraft, serial number 105 was presented to RFDS CEO Rebecca Tomkinson at a ceremony in Stans, Switzerland.
Configured for patient transport, this PC-24 was especially developed to meet the particular needs of the RFDS and will be operated by RFDS Western Operations
“The Royal Flying Doctor Service Western Operations is proud to be introducing with Pilatus the first Rio Tinto Lifeflight PC-24 into service in Australia," Tomkinson said at the hand-over ceremony.
"The innovative aeromedical interior is the first of its kind in the world – a game changer for patient outcomes and improving health care to regional and remote Australians.”
Oscar J. Schwenk, Chairman of Pilatus added: “The PC-24 will become the emergency ward in the sky and will almost halve the time for long-haul critical patient scenarios. I am positive that the PC-24 will ideally supplement the existing fleet of PC-12s of the RFDS.
"The PC-24 will enable the RFDS to enhance the outstanding service that they provide to the Australian people. In the name of Pilatus, I would like to express my most sincere thanks for the trust and I am extremely proud that the RFDS now flies the Pilatus PC-24 as the first Super Versatile Jet medevac operator in the world.”
The PC-24 has a pressurised cabin that can accommodate medical equipment and beds for three patients and additional seats for medical personnel. The cabin is designed to allow fast, flexible reconfiguration depending upon the type of mission.
A large cargo door behind the trailing edge of the wind and and electric stretcher-loading device means patients can be loaded and unloaded safely. The PC-24 is the first jet in the world to offer this capability.
Individual oxygen, vacuum and power systems ensure patient monitoring and support, and additional security is provided in the form of a second and separate power system for the cabin and dedicated communication systems for the medical crew.
The aircraft is due to start operations in 2019.