St Helena Government is currently pursuing the development of a Service Level Agreement (SLA) with an aeromedical evacuation provider and a provider of secondary and tertiary healthcare in South Africa, to commence this year.

At present, the majority of patients requiring specialist healthcare travel to Cape Town on the RMS St Helena.  Only an extremely limited number of patients are transferred to the UK (usually via Ascension Island), and it is unlikely that this number of patients will change significantly in the foreseeable future.

St Helena is therefore likely to remain mainly reliant on accessing specialist secondary and tertiary medical care, in South Africa.  This means that an aeromedical evacuation service is required from St Helena for clinically unstable patients who require urgent transfer to private healthcare provision in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town and possibly other locations, including Namibia and the United Kingdom.

The scope of the Invitation to Tender provides for the provision of both an emergency aeromedical service and specialist healthcare provision in South Africa.  Two of the main points are:


  • It is likely in most instances that patients collected from St Helena via an urgent medevac flight will be transferred to either Johannesburg, Pretoria or Cape Town


  • It is proposed that any patient transferred via stretcher on the weekly commercial passenger flight will receive treatment in Johannesburg or Pretoria, due to the proximity of these locations and the inherent logistical difficulties associated with arranging medical transfer from Johannesburg to another location in South Africa

 Following review of the tenders (due to close in mid-February) and shortlisting, SHG will undertake site visits and interviews to be confident that the specification and service meet St Helena’s needs.  A decision is expected no later than June 2016.

Full tender documentation can be found on the UK Government Website Contracts Finder reference HSW-00063.


25 January 2016

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