Angels of Flight Canada
Angels of Flight Canada was established in 1988 by Gail Courneyea, a critical care registered nurse at the Peterborough Civic Hospital for 16 years. In 1986, Courneyea was asked to accompany a patient on an air ambulance. She felt very uncomfortable during the 20-minute flight as she was working in a foreign environment and had a fear of flying. Determined to overcome her fears, Courneyea received a certificate in aeromedical care and her private pilot’s licence in the United States in 1987. She founded Angels of Flight Canada Inc. in 1988, as no employment as a flight nurse existed in Canada at the time.
Air Medical Transport
Since its inception, Angels of Flight Canada has employed aeromedically trained RNs, paramedics and physicians and has successfully transported thousands of patients on private and commercial planes. Clients are referred from private inquiries, hospitals, insurance companies and government departments, such as Canada Border Services Agency and Canadian Foreign Affairs.
Ground Medical Transport
Angels of Flight Canada’s ground transport service division, Ambu-Lans, was developed in 1995 to provide non-emergency patient transportation. These services include inter-hospital transfers, to and from home to clinic/hospital appointments, and transfers to and from the airport. Ambu-Lans services Central and Eastern Ontario with bases located in Richmond Hill, Oshawa and Peterborough. In 1999, a call centre was established to provide professional coordination and triage of medical transportation globally. Calls are taken by flight nurses who consider all details and organize all travel arrangements from door to door.
Education and Consulting
In 1993, an education division, Exodus Academy, was established to provide aeromedical education programs to health care and aviation professionals. In 2007, the Exodus Academy held the Challenges of In-Flight Safety conference. In May 2010, an online training program, Exodus Air and Medical Studies, was initiated to make aeromedical training more readily accessible.
Global Angel Charitable Organization
Following the loss of her daughter to leukemia, Courneyea founded a registered charity in 2007 known as Global Angel Charitable Organization. The mandate of the charity is to provide assistance for medical transport to those in need of treatment, repatriation, and benevolent needs regardless of in financial status. Global Angel assists patients through corporate and private donations and utilizes various media outlets and fundraising efforts. Since its inception, Global Angel has provided assistance to numerous patients, many of whom were suffering from terminal illness and wanted to be home with family in their final days. In January 2010, Global Angel and Angels of Flight Canada assisted Canadian Medical Assistance Teams (CMAT) and other medical relief organizations mobilize their teams to earthquake stricken Haiti.
In November 2010, the Angels Global Healthcare division was started to meet the needs of an increasing number of patients seeking private and global healthcare options. Angels Global Healthcare representatives attended the 3rd World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare Congress in Los Angeles in September 2010. In December 2010, Angels Global Healthcare was certified by the Medical Tourism Association as a Medical Tourism Facilitator company.
Awards and Certification
Gail Courneyea has won numerous awards for her work with Angels of Flight Canada, including 1993 Woman of the Year by the Peterborough YWCA and winner of the 2003 Women in Business award. It is ISO 9001-2008 certified through NFS and maintains an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.
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