A common misconception people frequently tend to make about commercial flight nurses is that they are experienced flight nurses who work on and/or for a commercial airline as opposed to working for a hospital, health care organization or the military.
In reality nurses who provide medical assistance to patients on commercial aircrafts aren’t really flight nurses, they’re actually general nurses (usually a LPN or Assistant) that provides a service to an individual patient who is physically and mentally capable of flying on board a commercial airline, but may need medical monitoring to ensure that they reach their destination safety and comfortably.
These nurses aren’t hired by the airline and usually volunteer or contract their services to a hospital, health care organization or agency.
They also do not have the level of training, certification and experience flight nurses have acquired over the years but they do have a good amount of experience working in the health care industry usually from working at either a hospital, medical office or a health care organization, and are capable of providing one on one care to patients in need of temporary assistance while they are commuting on board a commercial aircraft.
In some circumstances a nurse may volunteer (free of charge) his or her services to help ferry a patient from one place to another so that he/she can get the medical attention they need.
In other situations a nurse may be contracted (paid for their services) by a hospital, agency or health care organization to transfer a patient from their current location to a hospital or health care facility which requires the use of a commercial airline.
In either situation patients who are being transferred via commercial aircraft are stable, aren’t in critical condition and do not need an emergency flight medical response team to transport them.
Commercial flight nurses are great because they provide hospitals and organizations with a cost-effective way to transport stable patients to various health care facilities at a fraction of the cost it would take to use a flight nurse, aero-medical response team and crew.
Not only does this help provide patients with a more personalized experience but it also helps hospitals and health care organizations keep their costs down which would otherwise be transferred on to the patients and/or health insurance companies.
Commercial flight nursing provides a win/win situation for everyone by lowering costs and providing a specialized service, and as the costs of health care continues to increase and the population continues to grow it will become more and more important to have cost-effective services such as the ones the commercial flight nursing industry provides in order to keep the health care industries costs as low as possible.