Air Ambulance America: Wings of Medicine

Are there alternatives to air ambulance transport?

Yes. There are some alternatives to an air ambulance flight. Some patients who can sit up and are not in critical care may be able to take a commercial flight with a medical flight escort.

The medical director will get a briefing from the attending hospital or doctor and decide if the patient is fit to fly on a scheduled commercial airliner.

Medical flight escorts are nurses and paramedics that are trained, experienced, and certified in flight physiology. This simply means that they have some training to understand how the human body changes at high altitudes.

Also, if a patient is in good condition but can not sit up, it is possible to hire a stretcher van or an ambulance to take the patient by ground. For distances of more than 300 miles, however, it usually is not any more expensive to take an air ambulance. In that case, an air ambulance would be quicker and overall a more comfortable ride for the patient.

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