The Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia is a charitable institution which ensures a medical supply of aeroplanes or gives medical advice by telephone or radio equipment in many cases, for people with help in the little populated areas of Australia. The service works round-the-clock and helps both if emergency and in the general health care.
The RFDS was founded 1928 of John Flynn, a priest of the Presbyterian church. He wanted to end the abuse, that there are only two doctor for the two million km². Already 1912 he called the Australian inland mission in the life and opened some bush hospitals. To be able to cover the enormous distances, he put as soon as technology was reliable enough on aeroplanes.
The first flying doctor took off on August 2nd, 1927. A man was fetched who had a fractured pelvis and suffered on a back injury. Qantas took on many rescue flights and collaborated in John Flynn´s "experiment". The Flying-Doctor scheme was fixed during a Qantas meeting on November 19th, 1927. The cooperation was approved and sealed with a one one-year contract on March 27th, 1928. The first aeroplane got the name "Victory". Still there was no medical supply on board, the aeroplane served for the transport merely. It exact rules were built in cooperation with Qantas, these for the safety of the flying staff should provide like also the patients. So the doctor was allowed never to be alone the pilot. The doctor was flown to urgent cases, medical advice should be given by radio, clinical complexes should be built up, where the doctors are not be regularly, to make contact with a station of the flying doctors from there.
The coming into being of the RFDS is combined with the develop- ment of an easily operable and independent of the electricity grid radio equipment closely.
Through what km could take also remote places or farms about a distance of 500 with the RFDS contact was developed 1928 of Alfred Traeger series ripely. The power supply was carried out via a pedal drive. The first official news of Augustus Downs was transmitted to north Queensland on June 20th, 1929. In 1937 the sending a message in Morse code author was a piece of past, the telephones were new models. In 1939 Traeger brought out a model that completely did without pedals. He used a vibrator unity. Emergency number systems put outstations through to the hospital to every day and night-time.
The first base of the RFDS took its position in Cloncurry (Queens- land) on May 15th, 1928. It was transferred to Mount Isa mean- while. The first flying doctor of the world, Dr. Vincent Welch, saw already 255 patients in his first year. Nevertheless many people who lived far away from telephone and telegraphs could not profit it. John Flynn managed to expand his programme during the world economic crisis and to find supporter at politicians and church representatives, to expand this service nation widely himself.
The Australian Aerial Medical Service was founded in 1934. The first FDS-Section was created in Victoria, Flynn's country of origin on February 9th, 1934. Became the Western Australian Section registered on June 14th, 1936 officially and is in Perth with their headquarters today residently. Further bases followed in Sydney, 1936, as well as Broken Hill and later Port Augusta, too. The base in Alice Springs was practised of the countrywoman association as recognition of the sapper women in the Outback and for the celebration of their one hundredth birthday built and opened up in 1939.
Together with the bases in Port Augusta, Yulara and Adelaide it forms the central section. The section on Tasmania was formed in Launceston in 1960.
The strategy of John Flynn has paid off. All federal states in Australia are included in the Royal Flying Doctor Service. The Service operates with a fleet of its own of aeroplanes and employees today. The Royal Flying Doctor Service - may this one carry the addition Royal - since a visit of the Queen 1956 and the Australian Inland Mission give daily testimonial about the visions and dreams of John Flynn. The "John Flynn Place" and the museum still reminds in honor of the first flying doctors, nurses, radio operators, pilots, engineers and many more of the first RFDS time in Cloncurry.