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Concept: Avianca

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Background Worldwide, 2.75 billion passengers fly on commercial airlines annually. When in-flight medical emergencies occur, access to care is limited. We describe in-flight medical emergencies and the outcomes of these events. Methods We reviewed records of in-flight medical emergency calls from five domestic and international airlines to a physician-directed medical communications center from January 1, 2008, through October 31, 2010. We characterized the most common medical problems and the type of on-board assistance rendered. We determined the incidence of and factors associated with unscheduled aircraft diversion, transport to a hospital, and hospital admission, and we determined the incidence of death. Results There were 11,920 in-flight medical emergencies resulting in calls to the center (1 medical emergency per 604 flights). The most common problems were syncope or presyncope (37.4% of cases), respiratory symptoms (12.1%), and nausea or vomiting (9.5%). Physician passengers provided medical assistance in 48.1% of in-flight medical emergencies, and aircraft diversion occurred in 7.3%. Of 10,914 patients for whom postflight follow-up data were available, 25.8% were transported to a hospital by emergency-medical-service personnel, 8.6% were admitted, and 0.3% died. The most common triggers for admission were possible stroke (odds ratio, 3.36; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.88 to 6.03), respiratory symptoms (odds ratio, 2.13; 95% CI, 1.48 to 3.06), and cardiac symptoms (odds ratio, 1.95; 95% CI, 1.37 to 2.77). Conclusions Most in-flight medical emergencies were related to syncope, respiratory symptoms, or gastrointestinal symptoms, and a physician was frequently the responding medical volunteer. Few in-flight medical emergencies resulted in diversion of aircraft or death; one fourth of passengers who had an in-flight medical emergency underwent additional evaluation in a hospital. (Funded by the National Institutes of Health.).

Concepts: Myocardial infarction, Physician, First aid, Emergency medical services, Aircraft, Airline, Avianca, Airlines

2

In recent years, the U.S. commercial airline industry has achieved unprecedented levels of safety, with the statistical risk associated with U.S. commercial aviation falling to 0.003 fatalities per 100 million passengers. But decades of research on organizational learning show that success often breeds complacency and failure inspires improvement. With accidents as rare events, can the airline industry continue safety advancements? This question is complicated by the complex system in which the industry operates where chance combinations of multiple factors contribute to what are largely probabilistic (rather than deterministic) outcomes. Thus, some apparent successes are realized because of good fortune rather than good processes, and this research intends to bring attention to these events, the near-misses. The processes that create these near-misses could pose a threat if multiple contributing factors combine in adverse ways without the intervention of good fortune. Yet, near-misses (if recognized as such) can, theoretically, offer a mechanism for continuing safety improvements, above and beyond learning gleaned from observable failure. We test whether or not this learning is apparent in the airline industry. Using data from 1990 to 2007, fixed effects Poisson regressions show that airlines learn from accidents (their own and others), and from one category of near-misses-those where the possible dangers are salient. Unfortunately, airlines do not improve following near-miss incidents when the focal event has no clear warnings of significant danger. Therefore, while airlines need to and can learn from certain near-misses, we conclude with recommendations for improving airline learning from all near-misses.

Concepts: Airport, Northwest Airlines, Aircraft, Airline, Avianca, Airlines, Civil aviation, Southwest Airlines

1

We conducted this study to characterize in-flight pediatric fatalities onboard commercial airline flights worldwide and identify patterns that would have been unnoticed through single case analysis of these relative rare events.

Concepts: Northwest Airlines, Pattern matching, Aircraft, Airline, Avianca, Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Regional airline

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American health care is facing an epidemic of medical errors. A major cause of these errors is poor teamwork. Crisis resource management (CRM) is a set of teamwork principles derived from the airline industry. Medical simulation is an educational tool that affords health care providers a means of improving teamwork by learning and practicing CRM. This article (1) discusses the case for teaching team training, (2) reviews the principles of medical simulation as they pertain to team training, (3) provides practical guidelines for using medical simulation in otolaryngology education, (4) discusses current evidence for the efficacy of medical simulation.

Concepts: Health care, Medicine, Health, Education, Educational psychology, Health science, Airline, Avianca

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This study investigates the impact of the aggregate and individual dimensions of environmental performance (EP) on financial performance (FP), based on a dataset covering the travel and tourism industry (airlines, casinos, hotels, and restaurants) across different economic regions over the period 2003-2014. The results reveal that EP positively affects the FP in the hotel industry when aggregate EP is used. When individual dimensions of EP are considered, resource reduction is found to positively (negatively) affect the performance in the hotel (airline) industry, while product innovation positively affects the performance in the restaurant industry. Hence, the trade-off effect seems to be dominant in the airline industry, and the ‘heterogeneous resources and reputation-building’ hypothesis is evident in both the hotel and restaurant industries. In addition, in general, the findings support the positive moderating effect of slack resources on the relationship between the individual dimensions of EP and FP in the travel and tourism industry, and, hence, are supportive of the slack resources hypothesis. These effects, however, vary depending on the travel and tourism industry under investigation.

Concepts: Affect, Airline, Hotel, Avianca, Airlines, Inn, Hotels, Destination hotel

0

U.S. airports and airliners are prime terrorist targets. Not only do the facilities and equipment represent high-value assets, but the fear and dread that is spread by such attacks can have tremendous effects on the U.S. economy. This article presents the methodology, data, and estimates of the macroeconomic impacts stemming from behavioral responses to a simulated terrorist attack on a U.S. airport and on a domestic airliner. The analysis is based on risk-perception surveys of these two scenarios. The responses relate to reduced demand for airline travel, shifts to other modes, spending on nontravel items, and savings of potential travel expenditures by U.S. resident passengers considering flying domestic routes. We translate these responses to individual spending categories and feed these direct impact results into a computable general equilibrium (CGE) model of the U.S. economy to ascertain the indirect and total impacts on both the airline industry and the economy as a whole. Overall, the estimated impacts on GDP of both types of attacks exceed $10B. We find that the behavioral economic impacts are almost an order of magnitude higher than the ordinary business interruption impacts for the airliner attack and nearly two orders of magnitude higher for the airport attack. The results are robust to sensitivity tests on the travel behavior of U.S. residents in response to terrorism.

Concepts: Economics, Airport, Terrorism, Airline, Avianca, Douglas DC-3, Air travel, Southwest Airlines

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More than 3 billion passengers are transported every year on commercial airline flights worldwide, many of whom are children. The incidence of in-flight medical events (IFMEs) affecting children is largely unknown. This study seeks to characterize pediatric IFMEs, with particular focus on in-flight injuries (IFIs).

Concepts: Northwest Airlines, Aircraft, Airline, Avianca, Airlines, Southwest Airlines

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Business continuity is defined as the capability of the organisation to continue delivery of products or services at acceptable predefined levels following a disruptive incident. Business continuity is fast evolving to become a critical and strategic decision for any organisation. Transportation in general, and airlines in particular, is a unique sector with a specialised set of requirements, challenges and opportunities. Business continuity in the airline sector is a concept that is generally overlooked by the airline managements. This paper reviews different risks related to airline processes and will also propose solutions to these risks based on experiences and good industry practices.

Concepts: Management, Strategic management, Hedge, Airline, Avianca, Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Flag carrier

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We present a risk analysis undertaken to mitigate problems in relation to the unintended deployment of slides under normal operations within a commercial airline. This type of incident entails relevant costs for the airline industry. After assessing the likelihood and severity of its consequences, we conclude that such risks need to be managed. We then evaluate the effectiveness of various countermeasures, describing and justifying the chosen ones. We also discuss several issues faced when implementing and communicating the proposed measures, thus fully illustrating the risk analysis process.

Concepts: Northwest Airlines, Hedge, Airline, Avianca, Airlines, Southwest Airlines

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Medical Guidelines for Airline Travel provide information that enables healthcare providers to properly advise patients who plan to travel by air. Treating physicians should advise patients in need of special services to contact the airline well before travel to find out if the required services will be available. Ensuring the required services are available throughout a journey can be challenging, especially when different airlines and aircraft types are involved. For example, airlines carry a limited supply of oxygen for use in the event of an unexpected in-flight emergency; however, this supply is not intended for use by passengers needing supplemental oxygen. Arrangements must be made in advance with the airline. Therefore, early contact with the airline is helpful. Thibeault C, Evans AD. AsMA medical guidelines for air travel: airline special services. Aerosp Med Hum Perform. 2015; 86(7):657-658.

Concepts: Physician, Aircraft, Airline, Avianca, Airlines, Air travel, Civil aviation, Southwest Airlines