Can Family Travel With the Patient in an Air Ambulance?
When a loved one is dealing with serious medical conditions, everyone wants to help and be supportive. The family of the patient wants to be involved and informed about what is going on. Just like the doctors and medical staff, a patient’s loving family wants what is best for the patient. When the patient must be transported, many issues of concern arise. If a loved one must fly in an air ambulance, can someone from the family come along for support?
The goal of transporting the patient is often to reach qualified healthcare quickly and conveniently. This is especially true for many patients whose lives are dependent on the speed in which they get to the appropriate hospital and treatment. In some cases, the patient will fly in an air ambulance just a short distance to a local hospital, in other cases, a patient may travel across the globe for medical services.
Each specific case is looked at individually. There is no one right answer to this question. In some cases, it is imperative to the patient that they only travel in the air ambulance with the medical staff. Frequently, this is due to space limitations in the aircraft. For example,, if the patient has just been involved in a severe car accident and must be air lifted to a trauma hospital in a helicopter, there may not be adequate room aboard the aircraft for the medical personnel to properly care for the patient if another person is seated in the area.
On the other hand, if the patient must fly long distances for medical treatment, larger jet aircrafts may be more suited to the medical mission. If this should be the case, chances are high that there will be the necessary room for a member of the family to accompany the patient safely while en route to the destination.
Doctors, medical staff, and family all know that the patient is more relaxed when they can travel with someone they know and care about. For this reason, whenever possible, accommodations for a support person are made during the trip in an air ambulance. Of course, if the medical mission is compromised by the addition of another person into the cabin, for any reason, family members will be asked to refrain and meet the patient at the destination by using other forms of travel.
During this stressful time, all efforts are made to make the patient the most comfortable and relaxed as possible, while keeping safety as the top priority. If someone wants to accompany the patient on the air ambulance to the destination, by all means, ask. If it is feasible, the medical staff will welcome the family member aboard the aircraft. If the request is denied, take heart that the decision was based solely on the safety of the patient and the flight crew.
Travel by air ambulance can be a complicated issue, but the mission is to safely get the patient from the point of origin to the destination as quickly as possible. In some cases, patients are not permitted a support person during the flight, but whenever possible, a family member is encouraged to travel with the patient.