Due to the rapid advancements in medical technologies amongst other technologies, the life expectancy of the common man in every country has increased significantly over the past two decades. As a consequence, cities around the world have become congested like never before.
Therefore, there is now an acute demand for critical care transport in Dubai via air amongst other cities in developed and developing countries. What is the need for air ambulance services, what are their advantages over traditional ambulance vans, and what are the types of air ambulances? These are the things we’re going to discuss in this article. So, kindly read on to find out.
Why do we need Dubai Air Ambulance Rescue?
You might be wondering why we would need an air ambulance service when traditional van ambulances are already running across the world. Well, there are several advantages that air ambulance vehicles like small aircraft or helicopters have over traditional van ambulances that make them more desirable in cases of medical emergencies which we shall discuss below.
They are faster than traditional van ambulances
In medical emergencies, speed is the need of the hour and sometimes, getting a patient 5 minutes earlier to a hospital can mean the difference between life and death of the patient. Since air ambulances like small aircraft and helicopters are much faster than traditional van ambulances, they are much better at saving the lives of patients than traditional van ambulances.
They are not hindered by rough terrain or traffic
Dubai Air Ambulance services such as small aircraft and helicopters fly in the air without any hindrance, unlike van ambulances. Even though van ambulances get the highest priority in traffic, they are still no match for the speed and smooth going of air ambulances. Air ambulance pilots can drive without any tension or stress even to difficult-to-reach places like hilltops, unlike van ambulance drivers.
They can carry much more medical equipment
Naturally, a small aircraft or a helicopter has much more room inside it than a van ambulance. So, air ambulances can carry much more medical equipment inside them like ventilators, defibrillators, ECG machines, oxygen masks, etc. than van ambulances.
This allows for much better and much more intensive care to be given to patients than they would get in van ambulances and this extra care more often than not will mean the difference between life and death for patients.
They provide a much more comfortable ride for patients
Air ambulances are not affected by bad road conditions like speed breakers, potholes, loose gravel, puddles, etcetera, unlike traditional van ambulances. Hence, they are able to provide a far smoother ride to patients, unlike traditional van ambulances.
Sometimes, bad road conditions have been known to cause accidents even to road ambulances, and too much vibration due to bad road conditions inside van ambulances can aggravate the health issues and injuries of patients and hinder the medical care given to them thereby leading to their deaths.
They can carry much more medical staff inside them
An air ambulance like a small aircraft or a helicopter will have much more room inside it than a van ambulance. This allows for more medical staff like an anesthesiologist, a cardiologist, a critical care specialist, a general physician, a nurse, a paramedic, etcetera to be onboard than in a van ambulance.
The presence of additional medical staff inside an air ambulance allows for more intensive and appropriate medical treatment to be given to patients which more often than not saves their lives. You can think of an air ambulance as a mini airborne hospital which is a matter of great convenience to patients.
Types of critical care transport in Dubai
There are four main types of air ambulances that serve various purposes which we will study shortly. In general, air ambulances can transport patients faster and over far longer distances than van ambulances.
This type of air ambulance is usually used for very long-distance travel like inter-city travel or even international travel. This is one of the costliest types of air ambulance which requires an airport runway to take off and land. Only metropolitan cities with domestic and/or international airports can handle aircraft ambulances.
This type of air ambulance is usually used for shorter-distance travel like intra-city travel or inter-city travel. Helicopter ambulances do not require an airport to take off and land. A relatively small helipad on top of buildings (usually high-rise buildings) will suffice. Helicopter ambulances are more common and often more convenient to operate than aircraft ambulances. They can also be used to evacuate people in case of fire in hospitals.
These ambulances are a hybrid version (mix of) of helicopter and aircraft ambulances. They are the rarest, most useful, most hi-tech, and costliest among all air ambulances. You can only see these in the US. They can take off and land on buildings and from airports as well. This is what makes them the most useful and versatile.
Short Take Off and Landing (STOL)
These air ambulances are similar to fixed-wing air ambulances but smaller. Unlike fixed-wing air ambulances, they don’t need an airport to take off and land. A small strip of road or an even open field is enough for the purpose. STOL air ambulances usually have basic medical equipment installed in them like an ECG machine, drips holder and drips, a defibrillator, a bed, etc.
They are definitely more convenient to use than a fixed-wing aircraft but not as convenient to use as a helicopter ambulance. This type of air ambulance is usually used to transport patients between cities in a country. The cost of availing this type of ambulance service lies between that of a helicopter ambulance and a fixed-wing aircraft.
Dubai Air Ambulance services are definitely the need of the hour especially in congested metropolitan cities around the world where road ambulances find it difficult to navigate fast. Air ambulances are operational in developed countries and are in their nascent stage of implementation in developing countries like India.
While air ambulances provide a lot of conveniences over traditional road ambulances and offer a much faster, smoother, and more intensive medical service, the following precautions must be taken by any hospital willing to provide an air ambulance service.
- All of the air ambulances in a hospital’s fleet must be checked for defects before every flight to prevent aircraft crashes and fire accidents in the aircraft.
- The pilots piloting the air ambulances must have degrees in Aircraft Operations to transport patients safely to their destinations.
- The destination hospitals to which patients from one hospital are being transported should have tie-ups with the hospital and helipads to facilitate helicopter landings.
- Patients being transported to international hospitals should have valid passports and visas with them (if required).
- All air pilots should have valid life insurance that their families can claim in case of untoward incidences.
- All air ambulances must have adequate parachutes for pilot and passenger safety.
- A hospital’s clients must have a copy of its patients’ medical records for faster and more appropriate treatments.
- How many people can an air ambulance carry?
That depends on the type of aircraft being used. Helicopters can carry up to 6 people while fixed-wing aricrafts can carry up to 10 people.
- What is the range of air ambulances?
A helicopter ambulance can cover up to 1,200 kilometers without refueling while a fixed-wing aircraft can travel up to 2,400 kilometers without refueling.
- What are the major weather obstacles to air ambulances?
Severe thunderstorms, hail, and fog are the major weather obstacles to air ambulances. The air ambulances should either be able to withstand such weather turbulences or they should be grounded in such weather conditions.
- What is the widely accepted color for air ambulances?
Red is the widely accepted color for air ambulances as red is the color of blood and indicates a sense of urgency to treat patients.
- Which are the leading air ambulance service providers in Dubai?
Saras Rescue Pvt. Ltd., Flying ICU, Medial Air Transport, and BlueDot are the leading air ambulance service providers in the UAE.