US Air Force’s (USAF) Air Mobility Command (AMC) aircrew and medical personnel have conducted an aeromedical evacuation (AE) of three US government contractors with Covid-19 using the Transport Isolation System.
The contractors were evacuated from Afghanistan to Ramstein Air Force Base (AFB) and from there, they were transferred to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center for treatment.
The REACH 725 mission represented the first operational use of the TIS which was developed during the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
Designed to minimise risk to aircrew, medical attendants, and the airframe, the TIS is an infectious disease containment unit.
It includes one C-17 Globemaster III and aircrew carrying two TIS modules and medical support personnel.
The TIS modules comprise AE specialists, Critical Care Air Transport Team (CCATT), members, infectious diseases doctors, technicians and TIS operators.
A warning order was received from US Transportation Command. Following the order, a TIS-trained AMC aircrew and medical team at Ramstein AFB were tasked to execute the mission within 24 hours.
The team has been drawn from multiple specialties and units across the USAF.
Pre-staged with a Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina C-17 and TIS at Ramstein AB’s 86th Airlift Wing, the team was selected in anticipation of joint force, allied and partner requirements in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
The Airmen and their medical team have undergone training to increase proficiency during the movement of patients.
A detailed and comprehensive process was provided by the Project Management Professional (PMP) to the aircrew and support personnel to transport patients aboard pressurised, military aircraft.
NATO Allied Air Command and USAF in Europe-Air Forces Africa commander Jeff Harrigian said: “Our unique capabilities paired with our strategic locations across the globe enable us to rapidly help those in need.
“Along with our allies and partners we stand united against a shared threat and stand ready to help when called.”