Tragedy can strike us anytime, anywhere..
This is the remark my mother made while watching the news about the devastating floods in Chennai that happened in December. I couldn’t respond to her immediately, as I contemplated the idea of patients stranded at their homes and in hospitals, desperately in the need of medical assistance, yet unable to receive so because of the flood. With a heavy heart, when I breached the subject with my friends, I was assured that although slowly, but definitely steadily, the number of jeopardized hordes of patients in India, and in most of the countries in the world, is reducing. This remarkable achievement is solely credited to ‘the air ambulance service’.
A unique solution
Air ambulance service uses air transportation, that is, an airplane or a helicopter, to move patients to and from healthcare facilities and sites of accident. Air ambulances are also used to transport patients from remote locations which are out of the reach of ground ambulances. It also comes in handy in cases of organ donation, where the procedures are to be performed at lightning speed. These aircrafts are equipped to provide intensive interim care to all types of patients during these rescue operations and also consist of a staff body of trained aviators as well as medics. Common equipment for air ambulances includes medications, ventilators, ECGs and monitoring units, CPR equipment, and stretchers.
The status in India
In India, air ambulance service is provided by a number of companies such as Air Ambulance India, Sosevac, Max healthcare etc. Service is provided through helicopters as well as aeroplanes, and the cost of transportation ranges from Rs 6,000 to Rs 1,10,000 per hour. The service through aeroplanes is available only in a few cities, while the helicopter service is accessible from all the corners of the nation. However, the fare for helicopter services that start around Rs 40,000 per hour is considered a bit expensive for the middle class and working class people. It is expected that the fares will be significantly reduced with government intervention.
So next time when a medical emergency strikes, don’t worry – help is always only a phone call away!
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