AUSTRALIA’S renowned Royal Flying Doctor Service has teamed up with all-terrain wheelchair supplier and preferred Wheeleez® importer Beachwheels Australia in a heart-warming collaboration, giving dying people and their families and friends the opportunity to visit their favorite beach or other off-road special place one last time.
The RFDS is one of Australia’s most cherished institutions, founded in outback Queensland in 1927 to transport sick and injured people from remote parts of the vast island continent Down Under to hospitals in the cities.
Today, the service operates a fleet of 77 medical retrieval and patient transfer aircraft and provides other vital services including telehealth consultations and doctor, dentist and nursing clinics in remote and rural areas.
In 2020, the RFDS flew more than 27 million kilometers and assisted over 320,000 patients through clinics, aeromedical transports and telehealth consultations. RFDS Victoria recently called on Beachwheels Australia for help after launching its Flying Doctor Memory Lane service.
The service is designed to support people in palliative care or end-of-life care to visit a place of personal significance alongside family and friends, whether its the beach, another scenic location or anywhere else that holds special memories. The free service is 100 percent donor funded, and is staffed by medically trained members of the RFDS Mobile Patient Care (MPC) teams, all of whom volunteer for these touching trips.
While the Memory Lane team endeavors to make every requested journey happen, some destinations – such as down onto the sand of a person’s favorite beach – can prove difficult with the use of a stretcher or normal wheelchair.