Video by UStiA
The US Travel Insurance Association (UStiA) has produced a short video, “Why We Do What We Do,” interviewing the people who help care for and transport critically ill travelers. These dedicated people - from a nurse escort to a pilot and medical flight director – fly to all corners of the globe to transport seriously ill or injured travelers who require medical evacuation, UStiA said.
"A lot of the flying we do is not during normal business hours,” but “getting to help people makes getting out of bed at 2:30 a.m. worthwhile,” says Greg Calkins, a pilot on a medical evacuation plane.
Many travel insurance policies cover medical evacuation, which can run as high as a hundred thousand dollars. These policies also offer a 24-hour assistance hotline, UStiA says.
Depending on the situation and destination, once a medical emergency occurs and the hotline is contacted, the assistance service jumps into action, UStiA says.
"Specially trained personnel may help locate the nearest appropriate medical facility, and help coordinate care with the treating physician, including arranging for the most optimal medical transportation when needed. In some cases, a medically-equipped plane may be required to transport a critically ill or injured traveler."
The assistance service also helps notify family, and works with the traveler’s physician at home to provide the treating hospital with information, such as prescriptions and special medical conditions, UStiA says. And, when needed, the 24-hour hotline service can arrange for a medical escort in order to assure that the patient arrives home safely.