Medical evacuation of patients COVID-19
The aim of this article was to summarize the experience of the National Center for Disaster Medicine “Zashchita” in organizing and performing medical evacuations (including those by air) of patients with COVID-19. Materials and methods used in the study included legal, normative and guidance documents, emergency call forms, methods for preparing for and performing medical transport of patients with COVID-19, EMS safety guidelines. The article lists basic normative documents regulating medical evacuation of patients with infections, including COVID-19, and describes the missions carried out by Zashchita and their outcomes. So fat, the Center has successfully completed 555 medical evacuations, including 64 aeromedical missions.
Biosafety of EMS teams involved in medical evacuations was ensured following the existing safety guidelines. For long journeys over 1 h, PPE should be donned upon arrival at the scene before leaving the EMS vehicle. Using patient isolation transport units is mandatory during medical evacuations of COVID-19 patients by air. Prior to starting a mass medical evacuation of patients with COVID-19, their number and condition should be assessed to determine the priority sequence for evacuation and the required oxygen supply.
Keywords: COVID-19, coronavirus infection, PPE, medical evacuation, biosafety, aeromedical mission, patient isolation transport unit