Less than two years after Toyota Australia first came on board as one of Heart of Australia’s proud corporate supporters, and having seen the impact that our service delivers for people living in the bush, Toyota Australia has more than doubled its support for Heart of Australia by providing us with four new Toyota Landcruisers and one Toyota HiAce commuter vehicle.
Heart of Australia will use these vehicles as part of its modest, but vitally important support vehicle fleet. Dr Gomes said the vehicles would play an essential role in the delivery of medical services to people in outback Australia.
“The Landcruisers will assist us in many ways. They will be our pilot vehicles for our full-sized mobile medical clinic trucks – HEART 1 and HEART 2. They drive ahead of our oversized trucks, transporting our doctors and crew as well as alerting our drivers to any upcoming hazards or wide loads approaching from the opposite direction. This helps to ensure our team, our staff,trucks and our medical equipment arrives safely at our next destination,” Dr Gomes said.
The support vehicles also help us to maximise the time the heart trucks are available to deliver medical services in the community. They allow us to perform logistical tasks and to transport our crews and supplies to and from the trucks at the start and end of rotations, removing the need to divert them to Brisbane for crew collections.
Dr Gomes said Toyota Australia’s timing was perfect.
“When Toyota came on board early last year, we were only operating our first heart truck, HEART 1. Since then we have brought on a second, larger clinic – HEART 2, a mini-clinic, HEART 3, and our next full-sized mobile clinic, HEART 4 will be launched in mid-2020.
“With each new full-sized clinic comes the need for more support vehicles. The decision of Toyota Australia to double their contribution from two to four fully maintained Landcruisers could not have come at a better time for the communities who will benefit from our services.
In addition to the Landcruisers, Toyota Australia has also contributed a brand new Toyota HiAce commuter vehicle that Heart of Australia will utilise as part of its brand new NextGen Medics program currently in development. The program will see Heart of Australia taking groups of medical students to the bush to witness the delivery of mobile specialist medical services in rural locations first hand. It will also allow them to engage with local health providers and experience the community spirit that living in the bush has to offer.
“Heart of Australia is committed to ensuring equitable access to health care for Australians living in rural and regional communities. That means more than delivering specialist services. It means supporting GPs with professional development opportunities, and it means helping to ensure a steady stream of future doctors who are eager to take up positions in the bush,” Dr Gomes said.
“Heart of Australia is very excited about the potential of our future NextGen Medics program, and our brand new Toyota HiAce bus that will deliver the students to and from the heart trucks, and around the outback towns.”
This significant boost in the Toyota partnership would not have been possible without the support of the individual Toyota dealerships, and the support of General Manager for the Northern Region, Jing Tadeo and Senior Manager of Regional Operations Jason Viney.
Jason Viney said the decision to more than double Toyota’s support, less than two years into the partnership was an easy one to make.
“We believe the work that Heart of Australia is carrying out in support of outback families is nothing short of inspirational. Since we first came on board the number of heart trucks has grown and the number of towns and communities they support has grown. Heart of Australia has now seen over 8,000 patients and saved over 350 lives since it started operations. That’s definitely something we want to support and be a part of.”
“Toyota Australia has received such strong support from families and businesses from rural and remote Queensland since we first started selling Toyota vehicles in Australia in 1963. By supporting Heart of Australia, we hope to give back to the communities that have chosen to drive Toyota vehicles for so long.”