If you’re looking for variety in the workplace, look no further than the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS). The non-for-profit organisation provides medical services to more than 283,000 people in Australia every year, with the aeromedical teams being dubbed the ‘angels of the sky.’ And that’s exactly what they are.
When arriving at a shift as a Medical Officer for the RFDS, you never know what to expect. In the morning you might transport a critically ill patient to the ICU and in the afternoon you could be holding a newborn baby in your arms.
One of the uniquely Australian emergencies that you are likely to come across as a member of the RFDS is a snake bite. One story, cited on their website, shows the need for this service. On a remote station called Supplejack Downs, which is an 8 hour drive from the closest hospital, a King Brown snake slithered its way into a family home and bit four-year-old Tessa. Being so far away from emergency medical care, her mother knew she had to stabilise her daughter before calling the RFDS. Once they were called, Tessa’s Mum continued to provide basic first aid and waited patiently to hear the propellors on the plane approach from the distance, which she says was one of the most amazing sounds she’s heard in her life. A couple of hours later Tessa arrived to hospital and was administered the lifesaving anti-venom. Less than one week later the RDFS was able to return Tessa safely back to her home. Read the full story here.
Ask yourself this: Why would you not want to be a part of saving lives in remote communities? The variety of cases ensures every day is different and the rewarding feeling at the conclusion of each call out is very unique. In saying this, many employees of RFDS say that the most satisfying part of their job is the sense of community. Each team serves specific areas, so are able to build a rapport with the community members, each of whom you may one day have to administer life saving medicine to.
The RFDS, which provides 24 hour emergency medicine access to over 90% of the continent, has turned into one of the world’s most comprehensive and sought after aeromedical organisations. Servicing more than 90% of the Australian continent, the RFDS’s national fleet of 67 aircrafts flew 26,157,502kms (which is the equivalent of 34 trips to the moon and back) and helped 292,00 people, which is one person every two minutes.
As well as providing emergency medical treatment and retrieval to a land mass of over 7.13 million square kilometres, the RFDS also provides telehealth consultations, a regular fly-in fly-out GP, Nursing and AlliedHealth Clinics to rural and remote communities .
With 1200 people employed across 23 bases, the Royal Flying Doctor Service employs people in the following areas:
‘Finding a job that feeds my soul’
“Being able to help people in need in a urgent time and save someone’s life and finding a job that feeds my soul and makes me happy and get closer to who really I like to be and spend my life doing.”
-APC Paramedic Student
For more information on paramedic training or emergency medicine careers call (07) 5520 2522, or check out our guide on how to become a paramedic.