Descriptive Analysis of Coronavirus Disease 2019 Air Medical Evacuations by Critical Care Air Transport Teams

Maj William T. Davis, Maj Patrick C. Ng, Julie E. Cutright, Shelia C. Savell, Allyson A. Arana, Brooks McCarvel, Lt Col Joseph K. Maddry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: Preserving air medical evacuation capabilities for critically ill patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) required innovation for en route care logistics, training, and equipment. The aim of this study was to describe characteristics and in-flight interventions for patients with suspected COVID-19 requiring air medical evacuation by US Air Force critical care air transport teams (CCATTs). Methods: We performed a retrospective chart review of patients with suspected COVID-19 requiring air medical evacuation by CCATT from April 2020 to February 2021. We included patients with an available CCATT medical record and transport with COVID-19 infection isolation precautions. CCATT medical records were the data source, and we performed descriptive analyses of patient characteristics and in-flight interventions. Results: We reviewed 460 records and identified 16 patients for inclusion. The Transport Isolation System (50%) and Negatively Pressurized Conex (31%) were commonly used portable biocontainment units. The median patient age was 48.5 years, and 94% were male. All patients required oxygen supplementation, with 8 (50%) receiving mechanical ventilation. In-flight interventions among intubated patients (n = 8) included vasopressors (50%), paralytics (25%), and patient-ventilator asynchrony management (63%). Conclusion: Patients with COVID-19 requiring CCATT transport were older than prior military en route care cohorts, and in-flight interventions for patient-ventilator asynchrony were commonly required during mechanical ventilation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-51
Number of pages5
JournalAir Medical Journal
Volume41
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency
  • Emergency Medicine

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