WestJet has announced an extension of its partnership with MedAire, an International SOS company, that provides emergency medical assistance to cabin personnel during in-flight medical events.
As the first airline in North America to fully leverage the MedAire In-Flight App, WestJet cabin personnel now have multiple ways to connect with MedLink doctors during a medical emergency.
“The first fifteen minutes of a medical incident are the most critical to administer care, and through our efforts to prioritize safety above all, we are committed to providing our cabin crew with the best tools possible to assist our guests in the event of an emergency situation,” said Dr. Tammy McKnight, WestJet Chief Medical Officer. “Through the efforts of our operational teams, the deployment of the MedAire In-Flight App will reduce the amount of time it takes to connect with a first responder and greatly improve the likelihood of a positive outcome.”
By combining technology, decades of expertise, AI-assistance and text-based communication tools, WestJet cabin personnel will have frictionless access to leading emergency medical physicians to ensure unwell passengers receive timely, accurate medical support, the airline says.
“Crew members are the first responders during in-flight medical events,” stated Dr. Paulo Alves, global medical director of aviation health at MedAire. “Their role is critical in ensuring guest’s medical concerns are accurately assessed and communicated to the flight deck and the ground-based medical team. However, limitations in communication equipment throughout the cabin can make this challenging. Having the app guide a first responder through the most common and life-threatening events onboard, helps them deliver on that responsibility.”
MedAire says it assists most of the world’s airlines with more than 200 in-flight medical issues daily and has managed hundreds of thousands of in-flight medical events over the last 35-plus years.
The MedAire in-flight app improves communication tools for flight crew to reach MedAire’s MedLink doctors, provides guided patient assessment instructions for a crew member to capture vital information that expedites care based on the type of medical emergency, and offers access for the flight crew to quickly engage doctors for assistance during medical events.