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New air ambulance to cover Djibouti, S.Sudan, Somalia

Storyline:National News

The East African Aviation (EAA), the first aviation company in East Africa, on Thursday introduced the first air ambulance service in Ethiopia, which enables it to fly patients including from Ethiopia, Djibouti, South Sudan and Somaliland to Dubai and South Africa, among others.

“The airplane is fully staffed with a medical doctor and a nurse and is also equipped with intensive care unit (ICU) and state of the art medical equipment,which help us to treat the patient aboard,” said Dr.

Rahel Tilahun, Flying Medical Doctor, who is among the crew of the air ambulance.

For the past 15 years East African Aviation (EAA) has been providing private charter services, flight training.

“As a pilot I observed patients dyeing on plane while they are traveling for better healthcare in countries like Bangkok and other countries. This is mainly due to the absence of air ambulance. Within one hour we now will be ready to takeoff,” said, Captain Mulat Lemlemayehu, Managing Director of EAA, who also served Ethiopian Airlines for 39 years.

Including the recent investment on purchasing of King Air 350 airplane from the United States for the air ambulance service, EAA has so far invested a total of 85 million birr (around $4 million at the prevailing exchange rate), according to Captain Mulat, who briefed journalists last night at the launching event.

He further noted that currently his company is set to provide three different packages of services.

Under the first full package medical insurance package, anyone one who lives either in Ethiopia, Djibouti, South Sudan or Somaliland can be a member and gets the air ambulance service and up to $50, 000 medical treatment at the country of his/her choice after paying $2,050 annual membership fee.

Under the second package any non-full medical insurance package living in those countries can also get the air ambulance service by calling on the dedicated phone lines at any time. “It will only takes us an hour to get ready and bring the patient aboard,” he said.

Under the third package expats and others people living tin the four countries and have their own medical insurance can also get the air ambulance service at any time, according to Captain. Mulat who purchased the King Air 350 airplane for this ambulance service five months ago and brought it to Addis Ababa in four days flying from South Carolina, United States via Island, France, Turkey and Egypt. (NMG)

EAA at its aviation academy is also training ten pilots from various countries including Congo, South Sudan and France, among others, according to Engineer Dawit Mulat, the son of Captain Mulat, who also designed and built a full motion simulator – three dimensional movement, which gives realistic feel and environment to the trainee pilots.(NMG)