U.S. Ambassador Presents Ambulance to Hiiumaa Hospital

Photo: U.S. EmbassyHiiumaa Hospital will have another way to transport patients from the island to the mainland for treatment thanks to the U.S. Department of Defense’s Excess Property program.

U.S. Ambassador to Estonia Jeffrey Levine and Lieutenant Colonel William NcNicol, chief of the Office of Defense Cooperation, delivered a 2005 Mercedes Sprinter ambulance to the hospital on Monday. “I am very pleased to be continuing the Embassy’s close relationship with Hiiumaa Hospital.  This transport ambulance will assist with one of the unique challenges faced by Hiiumaa residents and we sincerely hope it helps save lives,” said Ambassador Levine.

Gennadi Aavik, the chairman of the Board of SA Hiiumaa Hospital, expressed his appreciation for the continuous support and help that the hospital has received from the embassy and said it would now double the hospital’s capability to transport patients at the same time to the mainland for treatment.

The hospital contacted the embassy in 2013 when they began their search for a used ambulance. The Office of Defense Cooperation initiated the project, finding an ambulance and then getting it to Estonia. This will be the 16th such project with Estonia since 2000.

“The Department of Defense’s Humanitarian Assistance – Excess Property program is a great way for countries to receive valuable equipment,” explained LTC McNicol. “The donation of the ambulance to the Hiiumaa Hospital is another sign of the U.S. commitment to support our NATO ally.”

The ambulance has 13,000km on it and was previously used by the U.S. Air Force in Portugal. This is the second project the embassy, Defense Department and the hospital have worked on. In 2010, Hiiumaa Hospital received $312,000 from the DoD Humanitarian Assistance Program to renovate a wing of their building.