The exemplary work being done by the frontline workers has not got the credit it deserves due to the recent political news taking precedence over everything else. However, the air ambulance industry has not relented in any way. In fact, with the United States seeing some of the biggest surges in the COVID-19 cases, the air ambulance industry has led the way in bringing people closer to appropriate care throughout the country. Help is being constantly sought by people living in small towns of the country. The medical flight companies are deploying their helicopters and small flights whenever necessary.
The Demand for Air Ambulance Services has Risen
Most air ambulance companies are seeing a demand spike of over 50%. The fact has left the industry stretched and the personnel are doing their best to keep up. The need to follow extensive sanitization protocols has made the situation even tougher for the people and organizations involved. The preparedness, however, has not been limited to this. Most small helicopters are unable to ferry patients who are on the heavier side, which necessitates the use of fixed-wing air ambulance services. This, however, presents a new set of challenges.
The Oxygen Requirement is More in High Altitudes
Hypoxia has been the biggest worry when transporting COVID-19 patients through fixed-wing air ambulance vehicles. Patients, who are already hooked up to ventilators in severe cases, may experience an increased requirement for oxygen. The medical flights need to be prepared for such eventualities well in advance.
Another challenge has been the unavailability of appropriate care in nearby facilities. Air ambulances have had to fly farther to find the right facilities. This has translated into the engagement of personnel for longer periods of time. In turn, some industry players are experiencing a shortage of staff. However, the air ambulance industry continues to hold its own.