Sunday, February 06, 2011

S&R Helicopter Regiment, 26th PLAAF Division

The PLAAF Search and Rescue Regiment, (serial number 30xxx) hero of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake relief work is commissioning two additional medical service birds (a Y-7G and a Boeing 737). This is an effort of building up China's aviation medical rescue system. While the 2008 earthquake is no longer in the news, but it seems that the PLA is still applying lessons learned from that event.

PLA aviation medical rescue system moves one important step forward
(Source: PLA Daily) 2010-10-14

A joint exercise was staged heatedly in an area in northwest China recently. The reporters saw on the site that a batch of the serious “wounded” were transferred to a transport aircraft with the logo of the Red Cross on its tail. According to the head of the Health Department of the Logistics Department of the Air Force of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), this is PLA’s first medical aircraft for transportation and evacuation. Its service will gain precious time for saving life of the wounded on battlefield.

Following the medical workers to enter the cabin of the medical aircraft, the reporters found that the cabin was divided into ICU area and medical evacuation area, rows of specially-made multi-level sickbeds were installed, the medical workers fastened the “wounded” onto the sickbeds after medical check and classification and then they carried out such rescue actions as infusion, oxygen inhalation and vital sign monitoring. Several minutes later, the medical aircraft took off to evacuate the wounded.

For its advantages in rapid reaction, rapid rescue and little restriction from operational area, the aviation medical rescue has become a main means for emergent medical rescue in various countries of the world. The developed countries and their militaries have already established their complete aviation medical rescue systems. The PLA modified a type of transport aircraft of its Air Force into the medical aircraft with 5 to 7 medical workers on board. It can satisfy the consecutive medical monitoring and emergent treatment for 2 seriously wounded patients and accommodate 39 wounded on stretchers and 15 wounded on seats for medical evacuation.

The experts assessed that this medical aircraft could basically meet the demand of long-distance air transportation and medical rescue for batches of the wounded, symbolizing an important step forward of the PLA in building its aviation medical rescue system.

By Liu Fazhong and Zhu Haoping

Editor:Zhang Qingxia

 Search and Rescue Regiment performing relief work during the 2008 Sichuan earthquake

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