Going Long: The International Medical Flights

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An Angel MedFlight Learjet 60

By Angel MedFlight Contributor

The medical flight crews are called and dispatched to the sending facility. The bedside-to-bedside service begins as the flight nurse and flight paramedic meet the patient. The pilots have the jet prepped for the medical flight. This trip takes not one set of pilots but two. Angel MedFlight is making one of its many international flights, exemplifying its true global reach.

Auf dem Galata-Turm (li. Goldenes Horn, Mitte Taksim, re. Bosporus)

Istanbul, Turkey

A recent Angel MedFlight trip took a passenger from California to Turkey.  One of our Learjet 60s was used for the 7,383-mile trek  into Istanbul. As one would imagine, it takes a little more planning for an international flight.  Special landing permits are needed to touch down in other nations and Angel MedFlight flight coordinator Stacey Barnard says, “that typically takes 48 to 72 hours.”

This particular trip needed two pilot crews because  of FAA regulations. Barnard says the pilots can fly for only 14 hours a day and this trip needed a fuel stop after every 2,000 miles. When the medical flight touched down for refueling in Ireland, a fresh crew was waiting to take over. The first crew stayed in Ireland and rested, ready to take over for the second crew on the trip back.

Angel MedFlight is proud of its reputation as a worldwide air ambulance company. Its jets have flown to six continents.  Another recent medical flight helped a vacationer get back to the U.S. from a remote location in Peru, where she had to undergo emergency surgery. That was a trip of over 4,200 miles.

Angel MedFlight recently acquired a Citation X, a longer-range and faster aircraft. In fact, when the Citation X is ready for its first medical transport this summer it will be the fastest air ambulance in its class. “The X” as we like to call it around the office, can cruise at 51,000 feet and rocket through the air at almost 700 miles per hour, which is just shy of the sound barrier.

The Citation X is currently undergoing modifications and when completed will have improved avionics and winglets. Those upturned edges on the wings translates into more speed, better fuel efficiency and a better time-to-climb ratio. Flight Operations Director Brandon Kearns says the winglets “improve the operational efficiency of the airplane and increases its actual range capability.” This aircraft is also being equipped with satellite Wi-Fi  so no matter where the airplane is around the globe it will have internet connectivity. Angel MedFlight will soon have its entire fleet of jets Wi-Fi ready.

With offices in Arizona, Angel MedFlight is not a Phoenix air ambulance but a worldwide leader in the medical flight industry. Our crews will fly to virtually all ends of the earth to deliver  our exceptional patient care.

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