Friday, April 24, 2020

India Bans Medical Evacuation Flights As Rich Play The System

India has moved to ban medical evacuation flights over fears that the ultra-rich may use them for non-essential travel. These types of services take place when patients are critically ill or need access to specific resources that are not available where they are. India, currently amid a lockdown, has a ban on all commercial flights as it tries to contain the virus’ spread.

India placed a ban on all domestic and international flights at the end of March to slow the virus’ spread. The ban has left many stranded away from home and without a way to travel, even for emergencies. However, it seems the some of the super-rich may have been using a loophole to continue flying.
The flight ban only extends to passenger flights, meaning cargo and medical flights can still operate. However, India’s recent ban on these medical evacuation flights is based on fears that the rich are using these planes for non-essential travel. While no instances of this have been made public yet, this could lead to a shortage of medical planes for those who need it.
Nearly all passenger flights have been canceled, minus repatriation flights, but some airlines are still in the air. A number of Indian airlines are operating all-cargo flights to transport essential supplies within India and from other countries.
India’s ban on medical evacuation flights will mean anyone in genuine need for such a flight will need to jump through several hurdles. In order to take such a flight, it must be proven that treatment cannot be provided at the origin. After that, permission must be granted by the local authorities, the aviation ministry, and the aviation regulator, before the flight.
24/04/20 Syd Sharma/Simple Flying
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