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21 March 2006

Mott MacDonald assists with launch of new Scottish Air Ambulance Service

Scottish Ambulance Service launched its new air ambulance service on 20 March. Mott MacDonald was lead technical and operational consultant assisting and advising SAS in the selection and award of the contract to Farnborough based Gama Aviation Ltd, supported by Bond Air Services Ltd of Gloucester. The new service contract replaces the existing contract, which ends in March.

The Scottish Ambulance Service serves all of Scotland and is a Special Health Board funded directly by the Health Department of the Scottish Executive. It is the frontline of the NHS in Scotland and covers the largest geographic area of any ambulance service in Western Europe. It has two main functions, the provision of an accident and emergency service to respond to 999 calls and the patient transport service, which performs an essential role in taking patients to and from their hospital appointments.

The new contract will help to reduce the potential adverse implications of the peripherality of many parts of Scotland and mean that no-one suffering from an illness or accident in Scotland will be more than an hour from comprehensive high quality medical services. A key feature of the service is the operation of new pressurised turbine powered Beech Super King Air 200C aircraft in specialist air ambulance configuration which will offer patients, medical staff and crews significantly enhanced standards of comfort and performance compared with the previous fixed wing aircraft used in support of the service.

Mott MacDonald provided a range of technical, operational and associated advisory and support services to assist the Scottish Ambulance Service in developing the tender, ensuring transparency, assisting in assessing tenders received, attending final interviews of short list candidates and in the review of the operations and facilities of the short listed fixed wing and helicopter operators. The team also attended meetings of the SAS project team to assist with the review and appointment process.

Commenting on the new service Laurie Price Mott MacDonald director of aviation strategy said: "We were very pleased to have assisted the Scottish Ambulance Service in the process of assessing the future providers of these critical services to the health and welfare of the people of Scotland. The Scottish Ambulance Service is unique in the United Kingdom in being the only way that patients can be guaranteed timely access by air, by either fixed wing aircraft or helicopter from any part of Scotland to emergency or routine medical facilities.”

Ends

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