7 Handy Ways to find Air Medical Transport if you become Injured while Travelling
Posted on June 30, 2017
Adventures in exotic countries and travelling to faraway destinations is the ultimate dream for many. For others, business or work requires frequent trips abroad. Even though many people carefully plan their trips when travelling outside their country, only a few think about what they will do in case of a serious accident, traumatic injury or a major medical emergency.
Unexpected medical issues can arise while you are in a foreign land, where you are unsure about your medical care and don’t really know if the local hospital will be able to treat you properly for your injuries. In most case, family or friends are impatient to get their loved one home. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 18% - 24% of travelers even succumb to death from injuries in many cases when visiting foreign countries.
Regardless of how a patient might have injured himself or ended up in a critical medical condition, the major concern is the medical care they will receive. Some countries abroad are unable to provide the medical facilities which the U.S. citizens are accustomed to and because of the lack of quality health care, most people want to return home for long-term medical treatment. In cases where a patient is unable to travel without a nurse, getting transported back home might lead to frustration and confusion.
How to Locate the Right Long Distance Air Medical Transport
Most people seeking critical medical care wish to return to their home country to consult with or to be treated by a specialist while others wish to be near family and friends. No matter what the situation, when a patient requires medical repatriation or evacuation, they generally seek assistance and appropriate travel plans to schedule their return.
Air medical transport or air ambulance services are the best option when it comes to transporting a critically sick or injured person home. As they offer medically equipped aircrafts and have the team required for patient care. But how do you find the best air medical transport? There are many companies out there that offer air ambulance services, but how do you determine the right one?
If you find yourself or your loved one in such a situation, here are a few handy ways that will help you deal with your scenario and aid you in finding the best air medical transport company:
1. Alert Attendants & Fellow Travelers
Sometimes, in certain circumstances, people fall critically ill while travelling on an airplane or a cruise ship. In such a case it is imperative to alert the crew members, fellow travelers and attendants onboard the craft so they may get immediate help. This is important because if there is a doctor or medical personnel onboard, they will be able to examine the patient to determine the cause of their condition and the next steps.
2. International Medical Evacuation
Not all air ambulance service providers will be able to fly you internationally. This is particularly important if you or your loved ones fly aboard frequently and have fallen ill in another country. In certain cases, patients might have to be evacuated from the location they are in and redirected to a medical facility within their own country. If you have travel insurance with medical coverage, you might be reimbursed for the medevac cost. However, in most cases where the travel insurance does not cover the medevac cost, you will have to find a reliable air medical transport company that provides dedicated international medical evacuation services.
3. Ask the Right Questions
There are dozens of air ambulance services available online but you cannot randomly select one for your patient. So how do you tell them apart? By asking the right questions which will allow you to make the right choice. A couple of things you should be asking:
Are you an air medical transport provider or a broker?
How many years have you been in business?
Do you maintain your own aircrafts?
Do you employ your own medical flight crew?
Remember, that brokers are not direct transport providers and will charge a commission whereas air ambulance service providers will be responsible for providing air medical transport along with other services including bedside to bedside transportation etc. Air medical transportation companies that have been in business for years will have the right knowledge and experience to guide you and transport your patient safely. They will also own their aircrafts, employ their own medically certified crew and have the fleet capability of transporting patients safely across the globe.
4. Seek Gold Standard Accreditation
Is the air medical transport company accredited by CAMTS? Do they have certifications from FAA and IAMTCS? CAMTS (Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems) is regarded as the highest Gold Standard worldwide for air ambulance companies and recognized throughout the U.S. Trusted air medical transport providers will also have global FAA authority certification as well as IAMTCS certification by the National Association of Air Medical Communication Specialists which ensures safety knowledge and professionalism of the company. So, make sure you do not overlook this one.
5. Upfront Air Medical Transport Cost
Before you select air ambulance services, you need to be sure about the coverage your insurance plan provides you and the hidden costs covered in confusing contracts. In a previous post related to air medical transport cost, we discussed in detail about how much insurance generally covers. Where some pay a reasonable amount others do not cover long distance medical transport costs. In such a case, it is essential that you seek a long distance medical transport company that offers comprehensive Membership Plans, without any hidden or additional costs, that range from exclusive Family Plans to Individual plans and include Annual, Short term, Extended Stay and Student plans, covering various factors and saving patients from crippling air ambulance costs.
6. Medical Patient Care Capabilities
Not all patients require 24/7 monitoring, some require assistance while traveling back home while others require specific medical care administration. Based on the requirements of the patient, the Air Medical Transport Company you select should be able to provide commercial medical escort services in the form of a licensed professional, bedside to bedside transportation alongside medical care on multiple levels.
7. Review their Patient Care Services
How quickly an air medical transport service respond to accommodate the patient’s condition says a lot about the long distance medical transport company you opt for. Accidents can happen any time and professional air ambulance services will have a highly trained staff to handle such situations, a capable flight crew who has experience of flying in all kinds of weather and medical jets equipped for virtually every critical care scenario. Even though not all air medical transport companies are created equal, the right one will have good customer reviews available online, provide you 24/7 assistance for healthcare consultancy and will be trusted by many.
At AirMed, we ensure that our customers receive unparalleled air medical transportation services across the globe. Whether you need long distance medical transport for an elderly loved one, a physically disabled individual or a terminally ill patient, we have state-of-the-art equipment and certified medical teams to provide you a seamless service 24/7/365. As a preferred long distance medical transport operator for top hospitals around the globe, we have been delivering on our mission of an uncompromised standard of medical and critical patient care with a highly experienced and respected medical team in the sky.