The smallest patients often present the biggest medical challenges – and this is particularly the case in aeromedical transport.
But thanks to our team of highly specialised and experienced doctors and nurses, and our ongoing investment in state-of-the-art equipment, European Air Ambulance ("EAA") has become a world-leader in the field of neonatal and paediatric air ambulance transport.
Every mission is staffed by specialist medics. There is always a physician on board, with years of experience in neonatal and paediatric medicine; and a flight nurse from our team - all of whom are certified as providers of Neonatal Life Support and Paediatric Advanced Life Support by the ERC (European Resuscitation Council).
The medical crew all follow a neonatal and paediatric in-house training program. This ensures they maintain their high level of expertise and certification, and are fully trained on the latest medical kit - which on every EAA mission includes specific equipment according to the age and condition of the patient.
When the patient is a newborn – and especially a premature baby – transportation and repatriation missions are particularly challenging and demanding.
These fragile patients need intensive and continuous treatment, with close temperature control, cardiorespiratory and haemodynamic monitoring and intervention where necessary, and they are acutely sensitive to the tiniest environmental change including noise, air pressure, temperature and vibration.
European Air Ambulance has therefore invested in two fully-equipped transport incubators with neonatal heated/humidified ventilator and invasive/non-invasive monitoring, allowing mechanical ventilation, CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) and HFNC (High Flow Nasal Canulae Oxygen). The equipment, which provides an equivalent level of care to that in a hospital NICU, includes:
- Mediprema Nite Transport® incubator.
- Ventilator Stephan F120®, Hamilton T1®, Fisher and Paykel® humidifier
- Corpuls monitoring® with invasive/non-invasive blood pressure control
The incubators are mainly used for newborns (premature or full term) or infants, in the weight range of 500g to 6000g, whose condition is unstable and/or who need respiratory support. All crews carry back-up power supplies, and all equipment is loaded onto certified transport stretchers.
European Air Ambulance also has a Babypod®, a lightweight carbon composite transport device without built-in technology, which can be loaded onto any stretcher. This is used for babies or infants weighing between 1500g and 6000g, whose condition is stable.
When a mission involves an older child, a pediatrician will be on board as well as a specialist flight nurse. For these patients, EAA has developed an illustrated book designed to explain the transport process in a way that can help young children relax in what can be a very frightening time.
Transporting any young patient is challenging, both medically and logistically, and carries risks – but our expertise and experience means we can minimize that risk, and guarantee every patient, family, and client the very best care in the air.
More about neonatology transport