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13 June 2023

Keeping You Safe: New COVID-19 Air Ambulance Safety Measures

At IAS Medical, we pride ourselves on the high standards of care we provide to all of the patients we repatriate. Our air ambulance services continue to operate throughout the COVID-19 pandemic; you can find out more information about this on our main Coronavirus page.

In addition to our usual health and safety measures, we have put additional precautions in place to safeguard our patients, crew and staff members during this unprecedented outbreak. You can find more details about these measures below.

Measures for our flight crews and medical teams
To protect the health and safety of our flight crews and medical teams, and therefore our patients to, we have put the following measures in place:

  • Temperature screening
  • Health questionnaires
  • COVID-19 PCR testing, carried out sometimes on more than one occasion in a 24-hour period, at points of origin and destination, and tech stops in between.
  • Hotel quarantine during overnight stops
  • Restricted access to food, rest and recreation

We are incredibly proud of our team members for the professionalism, dedication and loyalty they continue to show. Through their co-operation, we are continuing to keep our patients safe.

Essential COVID-19 PCR Testing For Patients
A COVID-19 PCR test result is mandatory to accept any person onto an IAS MEDICAL air ambulance flight. This helps to keep both you safe, and our teams.

It’s essential that we receive these test results prior to your flight, as the PCR test results are added to the official documents which IAS MEDICAL uses to obtain overflight and landing clearances. They must be produced to port health authorities and hospital facilities in any jurisdiction.

In instances where the test is positive, we are obligated to use a Portable Isolation Unit/EpiShuttle to transport the patient.

We appreciate that obtaining these tests can be difficult due to limitations in public health screening policy, but we ask that all of our clients make extra efforts to push for these tests.

Where all measures have been actively applied at local level, and no COVID-19 PCR test result can be obtained, we may conditionally accept a Hospital Certificate stating that “the patient does not have COVID-19 Infection”. Only official documentation will be accepted.

If no COVID-19 PCR test result or Hospital Certificate can be presented, we are still able to transport a patient via an Epi-Shuttle PMIU on a CL604 aircraft. This is still a workable solution, albeit at higher cost.

Our policy for companions travelling on IAS Medical air ambulance aircraft
We understand that many patients may wish to have a companion with them on their flight. We will be reviewing each flight on a case-by-case basis to determine whether we’re able to accept a companion for that particular flight, which we believe is the safest and fairest approach.

The following requirements for companions will be implemented based on the circumstances of each case:

  • COVID-19 PCR test results for companions
  • Where test results are unavailable, COVID-19 Hospital Certificates for companions will be considered case by case
  • Companions may be asked to wear face masks for the duration of the flight
  • Pre-boarding health screening including temperature screenings

Ensuring the safety of our aircraft
Alongside our usual safety policies, we have invested in a specialist decontamination kit to ensure our aircraft are thoroughly disinfected after every flight to minimise the spread of infection.

For more information on the availability of our air ambulance flights or for any additional details around the policies we have in place to protect you and our flight teams, contact us on +44 800 7 999 900.