INCIDENT: Corporate client employee diagnosed with COVID-19 faced difficulties returning home to the U.S. to receive proper medical treatment due to travel restrictions from India.
LOCATION: India to Undisclosed U.S. Location
SERVICE: Emergency Aviation, Emergency Response
Beginning in April 2021, India experienced rapid growth in daily new cases and deaths related to a more deadly variant of COVID-19 spreading quickly throughout the country. With hundreds of thousands of cases being reported across the country every day, hospitals ran out of beds and oxygen, vaccines were in short supply, and India went into a lockdown while countries around the world imposed restrictions on travelers going in and out of the country.
Due to these unprecedented circumstances, a corporate client faced challenges providing care for a critically ill, COVID-positive employee in India, as well as with arranging transportation for the employee out of the country.
Upon receiving a request from a U.S.-based company to transport their COVID-positive employee out of India to the U.S., Global Guardian immediately began coordinating the emergent medical transport to safely return the patient home to the U.S. to receive proper care.
Global Guardian had to navigate multiple COVID-19-related restrictions, including a ban on travel from India to the U.S. and limitations from other countries, such as flyover restrictions of COVID-19-positive patients. Working alongside our local ground response team and vetted aviation partners, the Global Guardian team had to react in real-time to overcome various challenges to finalize and confirm the itinerary with the appropriate medical support and communicate the details to all parties involved over the course of several days.
In order to transport the patient, Global Guardian arranged—and received expedited permission from the U.S. Embassy—for a private charter to fly into India, outfitted with medical supplies, medications, and an isolation chamber, as well as medical staff with appropriate PPE. The patient was transported to the aircraft via ambulance arranged by Global Guardian under the direction of the “bedside to bedside” execution plan. Once safely and securely aboard the aircraft, they began the 24-hour, 14-stop journey to the client’s hospital of choice in the United States. During the extensive journey, Global Guardian’s highest priorities were keeping the patient comfortable and maintaining constant communication with all those involved, including the patient’s family.
The patient arrived in the U.S. and was immediately moved via ground ambulance to receive proper medical care and reunite with family members. Thanks to Global Guardian’s critical aviation partner relationships and network of on-the-ground assets, the team planned and executed a successful emergency transport, providing a life-saving solution amid a challenging environment.
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