What Does a Flight Nurse Do?
Flight Nurses are specialized professionals who provide critical care to patients during air transport, often aboard helicopters or fixed-wing aircraft. Their primary role encompasses assessing, stabilizing, and treating patients during emergency evacuations or transfers between medical facilities. Given the unique and often challenging environments in which they operate, Flight Nurses must be prepared to handle a range of medical emergencies, from traumatic injuries to critical illnesses, all while thousands of feet in the air.
To excel as a Flight Nurse, one must possess an extensive background in critical care or emergency nursing, coupled with the ability to adapt swiftly in high-pressure and ever-changing situations. The confines of an aircraft, potential turbulence, and the noise of the engines make the role of a Flight Nurse uniquely challenging. Thus, strong clinical skills, keen judgment, and a calm demeanor under stress are vital. Additionally, excellent communication skills are essential, as Flight Nurses often work closely with pilots, paramedics, and other medical professionals to ensure safe and effective patient care during transport.
Typically, Flight Nurses are employed by air ambulance services, hospitals, or governmental agencies. Their role is not limited to just the in-flight care; they often participate in pre-flight patient assessments, preparation for transport, and handover of care upon arrival. Through their dedication and specialized expertise, Flight Nurses play a crucial role in extending the boundaries of medical care, ensuring patients receive timely interventions, even in remote or hard-to-reach locations.