The First Nations Health Authority and Helicopters Without Borders Partner for Remote Communities


Bringing primary care to remote and rural communities​​

​Since 2021, the FNHA and Helicopters Without Borders have partnered to help transform health care accessibility for rural and remote First Nations communities in BC.

Helicopters Without Borders is a non-profit organization that delivers health and wellness goods and services to remote communities across BC. Together with the FNHA, they are helping overcome geographical and resource barriers to deliver critical services to First Nations communities. ​


“Since first being approach​ed by Helicopters Without Borders we recognized this as an immediate opportunity for both organizations to work together," says Greg Shea, Vice President, Health Infrastructure and Development at the FNHA. “This development of emergency evacuation infrastructure and helipads in remote communities is one of the ways we're looking to bring health services closer to home."

The partnership was first established to mobilize COVID-19 vaccines in an expedited manner and has since been used to transport health care professionals and community members to and from remote communities as well as deliver health and wellness supplies including medical equipment, hygiene products and food and clean water to communities.

For many First Nations people living in rural or remote areas of BC, it can be challenging to access necessary medical care.

Across the province, many rural or remote First Nations communities are negatively impacted by inefficient supply chains, poor transportation infrastructure and severe weather events that can block access to vital roads, bridges and other transportation networks. Emergency services have difficulty reaching these communities—especially those that can only be accessed by boat or air or if roads are closed in winter.

Chief Don Harris of Xa'xsta First Nation appreciates having better emergency services for their community. “It will eliminate some of the issues we've had in the past where it was difficult getting to emergency services—especially for our elders."

Since starting their services in January 2021, Helicopters Without Borders has flown over 70,000km, delivered over 85,000 pounds of essential goods and 4,000 vaccines and connected over 400 people with health care.

How you can help

Helicopters Without Borders accepts donations to help support their work. Learn more or make a donation.

Medical transportation at the FNHA

For more information about the medical transportation benefits available at the FNHA, click here

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