Medical Management and Repatriation of Patient with Psychiatric Disorder in Times of COVID-19
As Marm Assistance, we provide superior Medical Management and Evacuation & Repatriation services even during difficult times and global crises. We organize patient transfers with medical escorts including the management of all regular and unexpected medical and logistical assistance until the final destination is reached.
Our patient in this case was in poor condition at the start and required medical assistance before any repatriation plans can be considered: 78 y/o female with Danish nationality and history of bipolar disorder & hypertension. In her home address in Alanya, her medication supply had ran out, she had not eaten in two days, was unable to go to bathroom and had fallen down causing a head trauma. Her original flight back home was 3 days later, which had to be rearranged along with several hospitalizations and home care services due to her fluctuating medical condition. Meanwhile the flight options for repatriation were scarce and closed borders were a major concern in the time of rising worldwide pandemic.
Past medical history & routine medications of our patient were unclear at the time of first admission. This required close collaboration with the accepting hospital & the insurance of the patient to determine her medical history and order a suitable treatment plan.
The medical condition of our patient was fragile, as she suffered from several disorders such as pneumonia, UTI, bipolar disorder, diarrhea, head trauma.. Even after her medical condition had improved and she discharged herself on first hospitalization; our patient was unable to provide self care on her own. She required specialized care to cover her basic needs, therefore series of hospitalizations and specialized nursing care at home had to be arranged before the repatriation plans can take place.
Ever changing flight and border regulations posed serious difficulties in planning the repatriation steps as our team had to be on full alert until the mission is completed successfully.
Our team had swiftly arranged and executed the transportation of the patient from home address in Alanya to a nearby well-capable hospital for initial examination and medical care, in just about one hour.
She required several hospitalizations and specialized nursing care at home address in Alanya, which was extensively followed up by our team. We have arranged all necessary transportations between hospital & home address, urinary catheter & diaper changes, assisted baths and supplementation of medications for her medical care and well being.
After the stabilization of the patient’s medical condition, our team immediately searched for possible flight options and began planning the repatriation process together with the insurance company. 26.06 flight of Istanbul – Copenhagen was our most feasible options. There were restrictions at both ends, such as the escort had to be quarantined for 14 days after the trip was completed & documentation of travel purpose was required for the escort. But some challenges caused our team to reevaluate possible options at hand: After we have determined the flights, we were informed that restrictions to enter Denmark will pose serious hindrance, as no foreigner was allowed to enter the country. We have overcame this obstacle by collaborating with insurance company to contact authorities in Denmark: We confirmed that an approval from consulate will be sufficient for our escort to arrive in Denmark, deliver the patient to local healthcare suppliers in the transit zone and return to Turkey with the same plane.
During the time above arrangements were made, we had to opt for a doctor escort instead of previously arranged nurse escort due to availability changes. All local plans had to be revised as the doctor escort was going to join the mission from another city. Finally our team had made arrangements for the flight 26.06 Istanbul – Copenhagen for the patient (with 3L/min O2 & WCHC) + escort along with all the ground transfers and related documents.
In conclusion, the patient was safely delivered to family members on 26.06.2020 as planned. We faced numerous restrictions(a curfew was declared in Turkey, even at the time of our escort’s travel) and we managed to overcome them to complete our mission and continue to provide our services to our customers when assistance was needed the most.
COVID-19 has created many unexpected situations in both local and international travel/communication. This was especially evident at the time as the countries were forced to take measures without strong experience in the matter, and situation was fluid. As Marm Assistance, we were able to arrange all services our patient required during a time where curfews were common throughout the country and where international conditions changed daily.
Current COVID-19 restrictions vary from country to country and origin of the escort or patient, so missions require much better planning, great versatility & persistence.
Marm Assistance, Turkey