Air Transport providers need equipment and resources - AAMS
Reporting by Kelly Murphy
On the frontline during any pandemic or health care emergency are the dedicated members of the Association of Air Medical Services (AAMS).
While its providers are trained to respond - in the air and on the ground - to all kinds of infectious diseases and emergencies, the size and scale of the COVID-19 pandemic has created a lack of equipment to keep its transport providers safe, says Cameron Curtis, President and CEO of Washington, DC-based AAMS.
On behalf of the industry, AAMS has requested federal aid for a payroll tax holiday, priority access to protective equipment, exemption from National Guard or military duty, as well as specific leave and childcare support to address the challenges of EMS providers and services.
While providers are working to ensure transportation needs of patients, Cameron notes the emergency air medical industry is also seeing a loss in revenue.
“Fewer people are requiring transport services during this period of ‘stay at home’ and social distancing,” she says. “We estimate the loss of patient transport volume to be nearing 50% across the industry with a commensurate loss in overall revenue.” In rural areas where hospitals lack the essential resources to treat COVID-19 patients, the need to transport these patients to larger hospitals will rise. “Our providers need to be available 24/7 365 days of the year regardless of the need for transport.”
In an effort to hear concerns and understand the industry needs, AAMS has introduced weekly virtual meetings for anyone in the industry to learn and discuss relevant topics. More details are found at www.AAMS.org.
AAMS is an international non-profit trade association comprised of approximately 600 members representing 300 companies to represent and advocate on behalf of its membership. Its mission is to enhance members’ ability to deliver safe and quality life-saving care to communities around the world and to educate the public on how the medical transport industry works in their communities.
BlueSky Business Aviation News | 9th April 2020 | Issue #552