IntlSOS 30 Years - From East to West - Page 123



06 Any Time, Any Place | MedAire
Our tagline is Expert Care,
Everywhere.
— Grant Jeffery
In the Air
At Sea
MedAire’s specialist service includes a team of
doctors based at the emergency department of a
hospital in Phoenix, Arizona, known as MedLink.
MedLink is there to respond to calls from in-flight
crews and advise on caring for any passengers or
crew members during the flight, as well as pre-flight
advice about anyone who may feel ill before
boarding. MedAire provides bespoke medical kits
which the MedLink specialists guide the flight crew
on how to use. MedLink doctors also help pilots and
captains decide whether or not a diversion is needed.
A similar service is provided for super yachts, and
the commercial maritime industry. Being at sea can
bring its own problems as journeys can last many
days, so a mild illness can develop into something
much more serious. Greater exposure to local
diseases due to food, water or insects can cause
further problems. Slips and falls and sunstroke
are also common.
In one case an elderly lady on a flight from Dubai
to Sydney, five hours away from arrival, developed
chest discomfort and difficulty breathing. She
thought it was an exacerbation of her asthma and
used her Ventolin inhaler, however there was no
improvement. The crew connected the passenger
to a Tempus telemedical device and transmitted
her vital signs and ECG to the MedLink doctor in
Phoenix. The doctor determined that the lady was
having a heart attack, directed the crew to
administer medication from the aircraft medical
kit and recommended diverting the flight to
Perth. On arrival in Perth the patient was rapidly
transferred to hospital and underwent an
emergency procedure. She had a very good
recovery from a life threatening condition,
thanks to this telemedical intervention.
Medical assistance training of crews, on
a private jet (top) and yacht (bottom).
Again, the vessels have bespoke kits on board
equipped for their specific needs, and usage is
remotely directed by the MedLink team. Designated
crew members are trained how to react in such cases.
They are taught how to administer CPR and stabilise
patients, whilst calling MedLink for further support.
One case involved a 52-year-old able-bodied
seaman on board a vessel bound for the Philippines.
One week into his voyage he notified his crew he
was ill with a cough, fever and chest discomfort. He
had been ill for a week before boarding but had not
told anyone. MedAire assessed the situation and
suspected tuberculosis. The patient was isolated and
MedAire gave treatment recommendations until he
reached port. When he arrived at port it was found
he did have TB and needed to be hospitalised. The
Philadelphia Assistance Centre organised this and
also arranged to have the rest of the crew tested.
Grant Jeffery:
“Our tagline is ‘Expert Care, Everywhere’. It aligns
seamlessly with the rest of International SOS’
services, and truly states our essence and our
mission to our clients.”
115

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