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In early 2020, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic outbreak has posed the risk of critical care resources overload in every affected country. Collective interhospital transport of critically ill COVID-19 patients as a way to mitigate the localised pressure from overloaded intensive care units at a national or international level has not been reported yet. The aim of this study was to provide descriptive data about the first six collective aeromedical evacuation (MEDEVAC) of COVID-19 patients performed within Europe.
This retrospective study included all adult patients transported by the first six collective MEDEVAC missions for COVID-19 patients performed within Europe on the 18th, 21st, 24th, 27th, 31st of March and the 3rd of April 2020.
Thirty-six patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) were transported aboard six MEDEVAC missions. The median duration of mechanical ventilation in ICU before transportation was 4 days (3−5.25). The median PaO2/FiO2 ratio obtained before, during the flight and at day 1 after the transport was 180 mmHg (156–202,5), 143 mmHg (118,75–184,75) and 174 mmHg (129,5–205,5), respectively, with no significant difference. The median norepinephrine infusion rate observed before, during the flight and at day 1 after the transport was 0,08 µg/kg-1. min-1 (0,00-0,20), 0,08 (0,00-0,25), and 0,07 (0,03-0,18), respectively, with no significant difference. No life-threatening event was reported.
Collective aero-MEDEVAC of COVID-19 critically ill patients could provide a reliable solution to help control the burden of the disease at a national or international level.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Abbreviations : ARDS, COVID-19, ICU, MEDEVAC, MoRPHEE, PEEP, PBW, SARS-CoV-2, SOFA
Keywords : Acute respiratory distress syndrome, Aeromedical evacuation, Interhospital transport, COVID-19, Mechanical ventilation