July was a busy month for EATC’s “Aeromedical Evacuation Control Centre”! The AECC coordinated the aeromedical evacuations of 57 COVID-19 infected patients from Niamey, Djibouti, Bangui, Kabul and Al-Minhad back to the home countries. Of course the AECC also addressed during the month of July the evacuation of 36 non-COVID-19 patients from all over the world, as well as the usual air mobility missions.
Since the outbreak of the pandemic, the AECC has evacuated or relocated approximately 150 infected patients. The key to success was the swift reaction of EATC’s medical experts to this unpredictable situation, such as immediate recommendations to the member nations for the medical evacuation of Covid-19 patients.
But of course the AECC was confronted to a number of challenges, such as medical constraints such as infection protection measures to be adapted, closure of borders or airports or the compatibility of passengers on-board the aircraft. AECC also had to review and intensify communications between EATC actors, national medical experts in nations and in operations and others.
AECC accepted the new challenges with determination, success and operational effectiveness! Also on 15 July when ….
… an urgent request arrived with AECC : thirteen military and civilian patients needed to be evacuated from Afghanistan’s capital. Germany agreed without hesitation to support the partners from Italy, Belgium and Georgia.
AECC coordinated the evacuation with utmost urgency, involving the medical experts from the three nations. On the one hand, EATC tasked a German A400M to bring the patients from Kabul to Mazar e Sharif. From there a German A310 took over the patients to be transported back to their home countries. Both missions were performed under the command and control of EATC’s mission control center.
The A310 transported the patients safely back to Tblissi (Georgia) and Practica di Mare (Italy). The Belgium patient landed in Wunstorf (Germany) where he was immediately picked up by a Belgian military ambulance to be returned to his home country.
What a perfect example of multinational cooperation among EATC member nations but also for the benefit of partners, in this case Georgia!
Pictures provided by Kevin Schrief