Commercial Medical Escort: A Less Expensive Alternative to Air Ambulance Transport

Medically Equipped Learjet 35

An air ambulance is a medically dedicated aircraft primarily used to transport critically injured or ill patients over long distances when other forms of transportation would be impossible, impractical or too great of a risk. When a patient’s condition is more stable and time is less critical, other methods of transportation – like ground ambulance or commercial medical escort – are less expensive alternatives to air ambulance transport.

Understanding Commercial Medical Escort:

A commercial medical escort is when a Physician, Critical Care Flight Nurse or Critical Care Flight Paramedic accompanies a patient on a commercial airline flight with all necessary medical equipment.

On flights within the United States, it is recommended for the patient’s primary care physician to determine that the patient is fit to fly.  At Angel MedFlight, our Flight Coordinators take care of gathering all medical documents and required authorizations for the patient prior to the flight.

Whenever Angel MedFlight schedules a commercial medical escort, we reserve first-class seats to allow maximum privacy and comfort for the patient.  Proximity to the in-flight restroom is an added benefit for some patients.  As with all medical transports, we arrange all required ground transportation, providing Bedside-To-Bedside™ service.

Commercial Medical Escort Equipment and Medications:

On a commercial medical escort, most of the equipment and medication supplied is customized for the needs of the patient.

Our medical personnel must carry their credentials with them to board an aircraft with their equipment and medication.  All equipment must be FAA approved to ensure that it does not cause interference with the electrical navigation or communication equipment on the aircraft.

Available equipment may include:

–       Blood pressure cuff

–       Stethoscope

Commercial Medical Escort Patient

–       IV medication and supplies

–       Syringes

–       Cardiac monitor

–       Pulse oximeter

–       Oxygen delivery equipment

–       Defibrillator

Specialty equipment may include:

–       Feeding tube equipment

–       Stretcher

–       Wheelchair

–       Aisle chair

On international flights, some commercial airlines allow patients to travel on airline-provided stretchers.  Seats are removed for the flight and a stretcher is secured in place to transport patients who must remain flat on their back. This service is not allowed on any carrier for domestic flights within the United States.

Available medication may include:

–       Pain medications

–       Emergency medications

–       IV medications

–       Anxiety reducing medications

For each commercial medical escort, Angel MedFlight’s medical personnel will carry all prescribed medication and/or narcotics necessary for care specific to the patient.

For more information about our medical flight services or to have an in-depth discussion about a patient’s medical transport needs, call Angel MedFlight to speak with a Flight Coordinator.  1.877.ANGEL.70

We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.



11 comments on “Commercial Medical Escort: A Less Expensive Alternative to Air Ambulance Transport

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