Services

Ornge Response

Ornge performs approximately 20,000 patient-related transports each year; each transport falls into one of four response categories. Learn more about the types of response and scope of medical transport services below.

Types of Response

There are four main types of patient transports:

  • Inter-facility patient transfers
  • On-scene emergency response requiring aero-medical evacuation
  • Modified scene response
  • Nursing station
 
Inter-facility Patient Transfers
The majority of Ornge transports are carried out between health care facilities. These patients typically require a service or higher level of care not available at the sending hospital. 

On-scene Response
On scene helicopter response is initiated by a land ambulance dispatch centre (Central Ambulance Communications Centres).  The Operations Control Centre (OCC) works closely with land ambulance dispatch centres (Central Ambulance Communications Centres) to coordinate and dispatch a helicopter in instances when the provincial Field Trauma Triage Standard and Air Ambulance Utilization Standard are met.  The goal is to transport the patient to a provincial trauma centre quickly and thereby minimize the time from injury to definitive care

Modified Response
A modified scene response occurs when Ornge has been dispatched to the scene but the local land ambulance has already initiated transport to the closest hospital. The Operations Control Centre and land ambulance dispatch centre (Central Ambulance Communications Centres) arrange for the Ornge crew to transport the patient from the local hospital to definitive care at a provincial trauma or stroke centre.  If the local physician agrees, the local hospital does not engage in medical care or investigation beyond primary resuscitation after the arrival of the Ornge crew, and transport proceeds immediately.  Intended benefits are faster transfer of the patient to definitive care.  ​Learn more about our Modified Scene Response Process.

Nursing Station Response
Nursing Stations are considered as a Scene Call/Modified Scene Call request if:
  • There is no Registered Nurse or Nurse Practitioner present; or
  • The request for service originates from a Central Ambulance Communications Centre.
 

Note: Any disagreement between the sending physician and Ornge staff on the patient’s clinical condition and meeting FTTG for transport should be discussed by the Ornge Transport Medicine Physician and the sending physician.

Scope of Medical Transport Services

Patients who qualify for our medical transport services are those requiring the ongoing administration of medications and/or blood products that is above and beyond the scope of practice of a land Primary Care Paramedic. Additionally, patients requiring the use of specialized equipment or monitoring devices during transport are also candidates for our services. Examples include, but are not limited to a ventilator, external pacemaker, multi-channel infusion pump, hemodynamic or invasive monitoring and IABP.

For non-urgent or primary care transfers, the patient must meet the requirements of the Ambulance Act  and the transfer involves one way travel of a distance greater than 240 km.

There may be circumstances where a request for service does not meet these guidelines. Ornge will assist health care professionals in determining the right level of care with the right type of vehicle.