Students & Medical Volunteers

Welcome to a resource prepared especially with the medical professional in mind.

MedAire’s MedLink Global Response Center doctors assist with thousands of in-flight medical events every year. Airlines around the world have relied on MedLink assistance for over two decades. Often, MedLink’s emergency care doctors have the privilege to coordinate with on-board medical volunteers who are their eyes, ears and hands when someone falls ill or is injured in flight.

This is your place to get your questions answered, get informed on regulatory requirements and learn how MedLink can help you if you’re ever called upon to volunteer for a medical situation in flight. We hope you can use this information to be better prepared should you ever choose to step forward and assist.

Questions often asked of us from in-flight medical volunteers range from how the Good Samaritan rule comes into play during emergencies, to what MedLink is and the most common in-flight medical emergencies.

We are very grateful for your assistance in the air, and hope you’ll enjoy the resources listed here. We are happy to receive your feedback and additional questions, so please feel free to contact us.

Many thanks,

Paulo M. Alves, MD, MSc, FAsMA
Vice President, Aviation and Maritime Health
MedAire

U.S. Regulatory Guidelines:

Aviation Medical Assistance Act of 1998. Includes a mandate to require AEDs, enhanced equipment and training for crew, and language on liability protection for individuals who attempt to assist during an in-flight medical emergency.

First Aid Kits and Emergency Medical Kits. Includes language on the number, contents and storage of on-board medical kits and supplies, including automated external defibrillators.

Emergency Medical Equipment and Training. Includes language on crewmember training on in-flight medical events and emergency medical equipment.

Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Air TravelIncludes language on  access to services and information; seating; boarding; deplaning; connecting flights; stowage of mobility aids; air carrier training; administration and complaints and enforcement procedures as they relate to persons with disabilities.

Department of Transportation.  Answers to Frequently Asked Questions Concerning Air Travel of People with Disabilities Under the Amended Air Carrier Access Act Regulation.

White Papers & Articles

Onboard Medical Events in Commercial Air Transportation, by Paulo Alves, MD, MSc, MedAire Vice President, Aviation and Maritime Health

The Challenges of Medical Events In-Flight
, by Paulo Alves, MD, MSc, MedAire Vice President, Aviation and Maritime Health, and Heidi MacFarlane, MEd, MedAire Vice President of Strategic Development 

MedAire Published Articles

Sample In-Flight Scenario 



This site is designed for information purposes only, and provides general information and not legal advice or opinions regarding specific facts. MedAire does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of this information and is not responsible for errors, omissions or inaccuracies on this site or from the results obtained from use of the information provided herein. Website users are always encouraged to check and confirm the information with other sources and through direct professional contact.

MedAire retains all rights to original information contained on this site. Contact MedAire directly for permissions to publish and/or use information.  

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