The Challenges Air Ambulance Transport Leaders Have to Face

When you’re running an air ambulance transport company, there are many factors that come into play to ensure the success of your service. And leaders like you have a multitude of challenges to overcome to achieve success and avoid failure. This post will be discussing some of the common challenges many healthcare leaders, including air ambulance leaders, have to face.

The Economic Challenges

Every healthcare leader has to consider ways to deliver better quality of care while reducing cost. You have to keep asking yourself how much of your spending go for a waste without providing any kind of benefit to your patients. These benefits could either be direct or indirect. So whenever you plan on investing in technology, education, etc. you need to consider how the investment will benefit your patients.

Workforce Issues

As an air ambulance transport leader, you will have several staff members under your employment. This could bring about conflicts among employees, which could affect the work environment if not tackled correctly. You need to constantly be on the lookout for ways to acknowledge and address the individual grievances of your staff members to avoid conflicts that could impact the quality of service they deliver.

Other Challenges for Air Ambulance Transport Leaders

In addition to these two main issues, air ambulance leaders also have to try and tackle several other challenges. For instance, changes in the political environment of the country could have a huge impact on your operations. As a leader, it will be your responsibility to anticipate those possible challenges and set up a tactic to overcome them the best way possible so that it doesn’t impact your service.

Another huge challenge is in meeting the changing expectations of patients. It would be wise to invest in technologies and protocols that would increase the convenience and quality of care for patients.

How to Improve the Way You Manage Inventory and Assets for Your Medical Flight Service

Medical flight service companies are obligated to properly manage their inventory and assets to ensure efficiency, reduce waste, and improve patient care. Administrators will be able to ensure that their crew gets easy access to the essential supplies 24/7, which will save time and make for a smoother patient care delivery.

Implementing Technology for Better Inventory and Asset Management

Your operation could significantly suffer due to supply issues. The risk of expiration makes it difficult for medical flight service companies to hoard supplies. And with a limited budget to spend on supply and equipment, the challenge is even more compelling.

You can look for ways to implement advances in technology to tackle issues such as these. There are now inventory management systems available for managing the use and distribution of your air ambulance supplies. Some applications can even track the expiration dates of medications in real time. Some can even be used to create purchase orders easily, so that the operation doesn’t run out of supplies unexpectedly.

Waste Reduction for Medical Flight Service Companies

Waste is a critical problem that many air ambulance administrators have to tackle. A large percentage of your supplies may be lost to waste, which results in the need for unnecessary spending that can well be prevented. Your company doesn’t benefit in any way from unused, expired, or trashed supplies.

With the help of technology that keeps track of supplies, you can have a clear idea of which items are about to expire and what you need to order to keep your stock updated. You can also clearly see what items you have in surplus so you don’t unnecessarily spend on updating the supply, which can reduce waste to a significant extent.

Why Leaders in Air Medical Transport Should Value Advanced Degrees

When you’re a leader in air medical transport, you’re responsible for enabling progress and growth for your people and your organization. Unfortunately, not every leader is capable of fulfilling these responsibilities. That’s because real-life experience alone may not be enough to tackle some of the issues and conflicts that you’re experiencing within the organization. That’s why it’s crucial that air ambulance leaders pursue advanced degrees that equip them with the necessary skills to better themselves.

Enhance Your Existing Skill Set and Develop New Ones

Advanced degrees can provide you with necessary skill sets that every leader should possess. In addition to just learning how to make decisions, you can also learn how to frame them and communicate them in a way that would be understood by every member of your staff. This can ensure effective implementation of policies and changes within your organization.

Air medical transport leaders may also benefit from higher education that can help them develop political acumen. You need to have a better understanding of the environmental and political dynamics that’s necessary for navigating the landscape so you can continuously strive for improvement.

Drive Learning Among Air Medical Transport Staff

When an air ambulance leader is pursuing higher education to enhance their knowledge and skill set, they could serve as an example to their staff. It could encourage and motivate staff members to enhance their own skill sets and invest in higher education that could further their career. This increased value in learning could prove to be beneficial for the growth and development of the organization in the long run.

Some advanced leadership training programs can even help you improve your knowledge in terms of cost efficiency, communication, data analysis, and evaluation. All of this can serve to benefit your career and organizational growth.

5 Reasons to Become an Air Ambulance Transport Paramedic

If you’re reading this article, chances are that you’re interested in joining the air ambulance industry. And perhaps you wish to provide life-saving care by becoming an air ambulance transport paramedic. Maybe you’re still considering the option and are unsure whether the job would be a good fit for you. Here are some of the best reasons why you should become an air ambulance paramedic:

Reason 1: You won’t be working behind a desk

For those of you who have been dreading the idea of working in a corporate white-collar job with your own cubicle, becoming an air ambulance paramedic has great appeal. It’s not monotonous like your typical office job and you’re always on the move.

Reason 2: There’s a high demand for air ambulance transport paramedics

If you’ve ever worried about being unable to land a job in the field of your choice, you wouldn’t have to face those worries if you become an air ambulance paramedic. The air ambulance industry is growing exponentially, and therefore has an increasing demand for experienced paramedics.

Reason 3: Experience better salary growth than ground EMTs

There’s been a growth in the salary graph of paramedics in the air ambulance industry. While the average salary stood at $34,360, some states have an average salary of $54,180 for air ambulance paramedics.

Reason 4: You can build your self-confidence

The role of an air ambulance transport paramedic requires you to be self assured and to trust in yourself. As a result of these demands, you get to build your self-confidence that will help you in your personal and professional life.

Reason 5: You get to make a difference

As an air ambulance paramedic, there may be times when you encounter patients who are so seriously ill or injured that they don’t end up surviving even if you did your best. But in many cases, you are the difference between life and death for your patients. And you can make a difference for them, which is the most important reason you should build a career in air ambulance paramedicine.

Keeping Your Medical Flight Paramedics Safe

As an air ambulance provider, it is your responsibility to ensure the safety of your staff. This is particularly important for your medical flight paramedics, because there is a high possibility of them getting injured. We’ve even highlighted some of the causes of injury in two of our previous posts. So in this post, we’re going to discuss some of the ways in which you can improve workplace safety and prevent injury among your staff.

Enhancing Equipment Safety

The first thing you need to look at is your equipment. If you went through the previous posts, you would have seen that medical flight paramedics are commonly injured while lifting patients. So the best thing to do to prevent such injuries is to replace your traditional manual cots with powered patient transport equipment.

These will significantly reduce the physical strain on your paramedics. In turn, this will reduce the likelihood of experiencing injury. You could install assisted loading systems that will support the cot and make it easier for paramedics to load and unload patients onto the aircraft.

You should also equip your aircrafts with safety equipment that your paramedics can easily access when needed. This would include safety masks, gloves, and gowns to protect them from exposure to harmful substances.

Enhancing Medical Flight Safety

In addition to enhancing the safety of your equipment, you should also consider the safety of your aircraft. Whether you’re operating fixed-wing aircrafts or helicopters, you should do a thorough maintenance that will ensure optimum safety for your crew.

Have proper storage systems installed for your equipment, so that paramedics can easily access them when needed while at the same time preventing the equipment from exposure. And make sure you have a routine check of your engines and inbuilt flight equipment.

More Causes of Injury Among Air Ambulance Transport Paramedics

In the previous post, we talked about some of the top reasons why air ambulance transport paramedics get injured. This post will discuss some more common reasons for injury among air ambulance paramedics. It will also discuss some tips to prevent these injuries.

Other Common Causes of Injury for Air Ambulance Transport Paramedics

Earlier, we talked about how air ambulance paramedics are susceptible to injury from body motion and exposure to harmful substances. We also talked about how they are prone to slipping, tripping, or falling. Here are some other common reasons why an air ambulance paramedic could get injured:

  • Helicopter accidents – When you’re working as a paramedic for an air ambulance helicopter, there’s a chance you could get involved in a helicopter accident. Mechanical failures, low visibility, and heavy wind and rain could put your helicopter at risk of crashing. Some air ambulance paramedics have suffered from injuries resulting from a helicopter crash. Some of these injuries even turn out to be fatal.
  • Violence/assaults – In some cases, air ambulance transport paramedics might even encounter injury resulting from violence or assault from a patient. You might come across a violent patient, who may be under the influence or alcohol or some other substance. These incidents may result in physical harm in many cases, and in some cases may even result in physical injury that requires medical attention

Prevention of Injury for Air Ambulance Paramedics

Both employers and employees are responsible for preventing injury among air ambulance paramedics. Employers can offer education and training, provide safety equipment, develop policies and procedures, enforce said policies and procedures, and address potential safety hazards.

Employees can identify problem areas, voice their safety concerns, and report any incidents of near misses and injuries. Protecting themselves with available protective gear per their standard regulations is also crucial.

What Causes Injury for Air Ambulance Transport Paramedics?

Have you ever suffered from workplace injuries before? Maybe you’ve experienced knee pain or incessant back pain as a result of your work in the air ambulance industry. When you’re an air ambulance transport paramedic, you are exposed to work conditions that could result in certain injuries. This post is going to discuss the causes of those injuries.

Certain Body Motions can Cause Injury

Body motion injuries are easily one of the most common injuries among EMS personnel. Paramedics often have to sit in awkward postures for extended periods of time. Sometimes they have to put in excessive physical effort in moving or lifting patients. They even have to go through repetitive movement, which could all result in an injury. In many cases, the body motion injuries may occur while air ambulance paramedics are in the middle of lifting or moving  a patient that is overweight or obese.

Accidental Exposure to Harmful Substances

When you’re working as an air ambulance transport paramedic, you often have to work around harmful substances. For instance, the respiratory secretions or the blood of certain patients may be harmful. And EMS personnel can get exposed to these substances through needlesticks, spitting, or coughing. So in addition to wearing gloves, it’s crucial that you wear protective masks or face shields to prevent exposure.

Air Ambulance Transport Paramedics can Slip, Trip, or Fall

Due to the physically challenging nature of their work, air ambulance paramedics can easily get injured when they slip, trip, or fall. They could experience these accidents while boarding or getting off their air ambulance helicopter. They could also slip on wet surfaces at the scene of accidents. And it’s even riskier to experience these accidents when you’re in the middle of lifting or carrying a patient or even your equipment.

More Hypothermia Info for Medical Air Transport Paramedics

In the previous post, we talked about the causes and symptoms of hypothermia. But that’s not enough information to help medical air transport paramedics in dealing with patients who suffer from hypothermia. In this post, we’re going to take a closer look at some other important facts about the condition.

How Hypothermia Impacts People

The worst thing about hypothermia is that it can affect every single organ in the body. In the case of mild hypothermia, a patient may experience confusion, amnesia, slurred speech, and impaired judgment. As the condition worsens, a patient that was once lethargic may become comatose and their reflexes may disappear. The central nervous system also becomes unable to regulate the cardiovascular system.

Need for Medical Air Transport Paramedics to be Aware of Special Populations

What’s important for medical air transport paramedics to remember is that there are certain age groups and types of people that are more vulnerable to hypothermia. Interestingly, patients who are either extremely old or extremely young tend to be the most vulnerable age groups. Both of these age groups have less physiologic reserve in addition to a decreased ability to produce heat when needed.

Some elderly patients may be unable to sense ambient temperature, leaving them unable to protect themselves from the cold. So during winters, you may notice that some older patients can become hypothermic even just from staying inside a house that’s slightly too cold for them. Since they have decreased compensatory ability, hypothermia may develop even when the temperature doesn’t seem too cold to you.

In case of neonatal patients, they have almost zero ability to defend themselves against the cold. That is the reason why warming plays such a crucial role in resuscitating patients who fall under this category. Infants that are five days old or more may be able to metabolically compensate, but they are still extremely prone to heat loss.

What You Need to Know about Hypothermia When Providing Medical Air Transport

When you’re working as a care provider for medical air transport, you come across different kinds of patients. Although you will most often encounter trauma patients, you might even have to conduct search and rescue missions if you’re based at a remote location. That’s when you might come across patients with accidental hypothermia.

Even in other cases when the patient has an underlying condition, there may be chances of hypothermia occurring. It’s important to carefully understand the condition so you can provide necessary pre-hospital care.

Understanding the Causes of Hypothermia

First of all, you should understand that accidental hypothermia can be of two types – primary and secondary. When the body is exposed to a cold environment for extended periods of time, it can result in primary hypothermia. In other words, this type of hypothermia isn’t caused by an underlying condition.

Secondary hypothermia, on the other hand, can occur when the body’s ability to regulate its heat balance is disrupted or there’s a decreased ability to generate or conserve heat. Burn victims, stroke patients, sepsis patients, etc. may be susceptible to hypothermia. Medical air transport providers should also watch out for hypothermia in patients with hypopituitarism, hypothyroidism, hypoadrenalism, or hypoglycaemia.

Substances like sedatives, alcohol, beta-blockers, antipsychotics, and oral antihyperglycemics can also result in conditions that cause secondary hypothermia. Major trauma, tumours, CNS injuries, and infusion or cold fluids could also be other possible causes.

Identifying Hypothermia Symptoms for Medical Air Transport Care Providers

Although it’s a bit of a challenge to recognize hypothermia, you can look for signs like depressed vital signs, speech difficulty, memory problems, mydriasis, behavioral disturbances, etc. You might also notice that patients with hypothermia may fail to shiver even if they’re obviously cold. Their pulse and respiration may also be a bit more difficult to detect although present.

How Novice Air Medical Transport Paramedics Can Make Great Pre-Hospital Splints

If you work as an air medical transport paramedic, there’s a good chance you will respond to emergencies in which the patient requires a splint. This will usually be in situations where the patient has undergone some form of physical trauma and fracture. You may think you’re already an expert in splinting but there’s always room for improvement.

Tips for Better Splinting in Air Medical Transport Paramedicine

As a novice paramedic, you may still be nervous when you come across actual patients that require a splint. Here are a few tips that will make it easier for you to make great pre-hospital splints:

  • Take your time if the patient is stable – There may be times when you need to splint an extreme fracture when you respond to a call. If the patient’s condition is stable, it’s important that you avoid rushing through the splinting process. Although you may get nervous, there’s no harm in taking a few extra minutes to carefully splint the fracture before taking them for air medical transport.
  • Make the most of pillows – Pillows provide good padding when you need to splint a fracture. They also act as effective splints even on their own. So if your patient has a distal fracture, you just need to roll up the injured part in a pillow and tape it firmly. But make sure the toes or fingers are sticking out.

Opt to control the pain beforehand – Although splinting is intended to reduce pain, the splinting process itself can be very painful. If your patient is screaming in pain it may be difficult for you to concentrate on the splinting and you may end up making a mistake. So try to administer some analgesics beforehand if possible.

Air Ambulance and Medical Flight Transport Services: Everything you need to know!