For some, a fear of flying stems from medical concerns, and believing that they won’t be able to get the care they need on their flight should a health issue arise. Etihad Airways is striving to alleviate the concerns of passengers with pre-existing health conditions by offering two new services. Before boarding, passengers will have the option of being evaluated by an Etihad staff doctor and receive the official go-ahead to fly by a medical professional. The second service comes in the form of in-flight nurses, who will pick up passengers from their homes or hotels, and accompany them through boarding and on the flight itself.
Nadia Bastaki, Etihad’s Vice President of Medical Services, said in a statement, “Etihad is delighted to be the first airline in the region to provide these new medical services which will cater for guests who require medical assistance during their travel.” Right now, the new medical services are only available to passengers flying from the United Arab Emirates, and will cost a minimum of $408 (1,500 UAE dirhams).
Although the services are only accessible to those with pre-existing medical conditions, the term “pre-existing conditions” is quite broad, encompassing any illness, injury, or chronic condition diagnosed before the flight. Airlines do, however, reserve the right to ask a passenger to deplane if they believe their condition will interfere in any way with the flight. This is not unheard of, as just last week a family was asked to disembark an Emirates flight because one family member was severely epileptic.
It’s not the first time that Etihad steps up to provide their passengers with the best service possible. Etihad’s Flying Nannies service is complimentary for all passengers on long-haul flights. The onboard babysitters are flight attendants with childcare training from the UK’s esteemed Norland College, so you can trust that your little ones are in good hands.
To request Etihad’s Physician Preflight Assessment or nurse on-board services, download and fill out the necessary form, and email it back to the given address.
H/T: Condé Nast Traveler