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Montreal is lacking an emergency helicopter system, according to Dr. Tarek Razek, head of the trauma team at the Montreal General Hospital.


"We have no medical helicopter transport system in this region or in western Quebec at all. And it's the only region I've been able to find in the western world," he said.


He notes that Nova Scotia, which is not a wealthy province, has a medical helicopter.


It is a problem that is frustrating for some of Montreal's trauma professionals.


"I have a child and I think about what happens if we're driving in the beautiful countryside and we have a car crash. He can't-- or I won't be able to-- get him to definitive care," said Dr. Paola Fata, a trauma surgeon at the MUHC.


The problem has come to light after actress Natasha Richardson suffered a tumble on a beginner ski hill at Mont Tremblant on Monday. The fall resulted in a serious brain injury. She was not wearing a helmet.


"If you have a ski crash at Mont Tremblant or in Sutton, I cannot get you to my centre fast enough to have those reductions in mortality. I just can't. Because we don't have the mechanisms and the systems in this region to get you there. So-- wear a helmet when you ski-- because you're not going to come to me," said Razek.


(Courtesy of CTV Media)

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Y'a bien des choses qu'on sait pas et qui, ultimement, sont pas trop de nos affaires non plus...


Peut-être qu'à Ste-Agathe ils connaissent pas l'existence de ce service.

Peut-être que la famille voulait pas payer pour ça (c'est pas parce qu'on a de l'argent qu'on veut le dépenser)

Peut-être que le diagnostic qu'on a fait tout le long était pas assez grave pour justifier le tout...

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Elle se sentait bien après l'accident, ce n'est que quelques heures plus tard que les symptômes sont devenus intenses. L'hélicoptère aurait rien changé, c'est le diagnostic initial qui était erroné (elle aurait pu être transporté en ambulance dès l'accident plutôt que quelques heures plus tard). Ce qu'il y a à blâmer, c'est la qualité des services médicaux sur place!

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