An ambulance, or “ambulance”, is a usual means of transport to bring the patient to the hospital. But sometimes it is necessary to deliver the patient at a distance of several thousand kilometers and in a few hours. For such purposes, sanitary aviation is used. In this article I will tell you about when sanitation appeared and in what cases it is used, as well as what unobvious but very strong benefits gives patients and their families.
What is air ambulance?
Air ambulance – used to transport a patient by air to the medical center, hospital, hospital where he will be treated.
Transportation of a patient by air appeared in the XX century. Military conflicts, or rather a huge number of wounded patients in them, required rapid transportation and, as a result, air logistics. Such transportation did not depend on the condition of roads and the presence of traffic jams, allows you to quickly get the patient to the hospital.
Today, the transportation of bedridden patients in the plane is used by both military and civilian specialists. Sanitation boards are equipped with medical equipment to maintain life and monitor the patient’s condition, comfortable flight of the patient and attendants. Often, the organization of sanitary aviation provides for the presence on board an airplane or helicopter of a physician – a specialist of the appropriate profile, depending on the medical needs of the patient.
Patient transportation by air is performed by state airlines and private transport companies, as well as large medical centers, more precisely – on their order. Most often, the price for public or private sanatoriums of one price range is paid to the patient or his insurance company, if it takes over this expense, of course.
When it may be necessary need ambulance?
Air transportation of the patient is used in cases:
- urgent evacuation of a patient from hard-to-reach areas (mountainous terrain, islands, natural disaster zones with destroyed roads);
- emergency transportation of a patient from home or hospital to a specialized medical center abroad (for example, transplant center);
- absence in the hospital where the patient is located of specialized specialists whose assistance is needed immediately.
The main task of the air ambulance is to quickly and safely transport the patient in serious condition (lying patient or an emergency case requiring immediate intervention).
Often, the airplane is necessary for victims of accidents, environmental, man-made disasters, military conflicts, cancer patients in a serious condition, patients who need an emergency organ transplant, patients after a stroke, heart attack, and children in a serious condition.
Types of patient transportation by air
The development of the air ambulance and technical progress made it possible to transport the patient, his family and the medical team:
- specialized medical aircraft or helicopters;
- scheduled and charter flights;
- transport aircraft compartment.
Modern helicopter models allow patients to be transported up to 400 km away. The aircraft has all the necessary equipment and medicines on board. In addition, for landing and take-off the helicopter needs less space than the aircraft. Some large medical centers are equipped with helicopter landing sites on their territory, which allows bringing patients directly to the clinic.
Special medical plane
The development of sanitary aviation is impossible to imagine without special planes. Such airplanes are equipped on a “from bed to bed” principle, which can be translated as “from bed to bed”. We mean, of course, hospital beds. This type of transportation by air is suitable for seriously ill patients.
Medical planes are often called air ambulances. There are resuscitation beds, a full set of complex medical equipment and medicines in the ship’s compartment. If necessary, doctors in the air provide emergency medical aid to the patient. Such equipment is used in civil and military aircraft in advanced countries.
In addition to medical equipment, the ship is installed a modern navigation system. Such an aircraft will take off and land at any time of the day in all weather conditions. Another advantage of patient transportation by medical aircraft is that the vessel is always ready for departure and does not require additional training.
Flight or charter aircraft
Sanitary evacuation by civil aviation is carried out by airplanes and charter aircraft if there is no need for special medical equipment to support the patient’s vital functions.
At least 24 hours before the flight, the patient’s representatives (relatives or companies involved in the organization of transportation) together with the airline clarify all the nuances of the flight, prepare visas, documents, insurance policies. The doctor, who leads the patient, sends a report to the carrier, where all the details of transportation are written (how many oxygen cylinders are needed, how many seats will take a stretcher and how many specialists will be a team of escorts).
During this time, the air carrier company prepares a seat on the plane. To do this, the stretcher on special fasteners hang above the seats or fixed to the floor in place of dismantled seats. The option of transportation is chosen so as to ensure the comfort of the patient and not to disturb other passengers of the flight, while meeting all medical needs of the patient. The medical team flies with the patient.
Sanitary aviation has the following objectives: to get any patient to their destination quickly and safely. Often, they are sick lying or sedentary. In this case, the airline uses a special elevator to deliver the client on board. During the flight at all stages, the patient is accompanied by a doctor of sanitary aviation.
Sanitation using a charter or flight aircraft is cheaper than flying a patient on a specially equipped board. But there are also disadvantages. For example, the flight plane will not deviate from the course for landing at a certain airport, which is closest to the medical center where the patient is waiting for treatment.
Sanitary aviation abroad also uses transport airplanes. In this case, a resuscitation vehicle comes on board the aircraft. The car is equipped with the necessary medical equipment, medicines, and a team of physicians. This method allows you to once again not to carry the patient from his bed to the stretcher and to another bed. Immediately after landing, the resuscitation vehicle is immediately sent to the clinic.
Transportation of patients by air is an option that is not offered by all medical centers and treatment organizers. But due to the fact that this method has become quite common, the air transportation service has become available to any corner of the world.
In emergency cases, the patient or his family can not quickly understand the bureaucratic nuances, quickly solve all problems with transportation. In this case, it is worth contacting an experienced organizer of treatment, who has experience in cooperation with companies – providers of sanitary aviation services.
When filling out the contract of air transportation, it is necessary to make sure that the airplanes of sanatorium aviation are equipped with everything necessary for such purposes. This can be done only by a professional. The best option is when the list of transport equipment, as well as the full amount of such service, is written in a document, which is signed by both parties – the patient and the flight provider.
Transportation of a patient by charter or flight is a less troublesome option. The company providing the service (international, private or state national sanitary aviation) selects the flight on its own, clarifies all the questions with the air carrier, orders the tickets, executes the insurance, equips the medical team, and is responsible for equipping the client’s place of transportation.