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Air Ambulance Industry Witnesses High Demand in India


It is a known fact that India – which is the second most populous country in the world after China – is in the grip of an ever-growing COVID-19 wave. People are getting infected in the hundreds of thousands each day and the air ambulance industry has seen a high surge in demand. The air ambulance industry is relatively young in the country and has only been active for a couple of years. The cost, however, is borne entirely by the patients in most cases as the health insurance sector is not as evolved as it is in the West.

The Air Ambulance Industry is Struggling to Keep Up

On average, the cost of air ambulance services has gone up by a whopping 50%. The increase in demand comes in the backdrop of unprecedented demand caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. Like the United States, most rural India has limited access to quality healthcare. Their only hope is to find a medical facility in the big cities. However, getting there is no small task given the size of the country and the choppy transport infrastructure. The air ambulance industry is filling the gap; however, it is a luxury that only a select few can afford.

Containment Facilities are a Hindrance

The need to quarantine the patients while in transit is quite challenging and precludes many air ambulance helicopters from flying infected patients. Besides, the government of the country has restrictions on using helicopters other than those designated as air ambulances. Moreover, the containment pods are imported from Germany, which comes at a steep cost. All these factors are limiting what the air ambulance industry can offer the people of the country. Industry sources reveal that service providers usually prefer flying patients out of the country owing to the restrictions placed on domestic evacuations.

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