The plane-savior was built on the basis of domestic AN-26 back in 2001. Its military and medical crew was formed at the same time. It's a miracle but somehow the crew was not discarded in peacetime as unnecessary.
In war's first year (2014) VITA carried out 135 flights and transported 1,858 wounded.
Viacheslav Kondratiuk, chief anesthetist, recalls: "Sometimes, there were two or even three sorties a day. It's not that easy. You have to buddy up with everyone, talk to them, establish a contact, internalize their thoughts."
In 2015, the aircraft made 76 flights and transported 1,505 people. This year, it has scored 18 missions and 220 injured.
The wounded are taken care of by a Vinnytsia aeromedical evacuation unit - seven anesthetists, seven nurse anesthetists, and surgeons who replace each other in turn.
All of them got trained in a pre-war period. Most of the training related to safety issues. "Furthermore, - Kondratiuk emphasizes, - it is important to know and understand how the flight factors effect on the body of not just an average person but of a seriously wounded one." For example, it's impossible to put a person on a drip at a certain altitude.
A winged resuscitation - this is how the crew members call their plane. It boasts an operating room with a special table, an apparatus for artificial respiration, a heart monitor, a pacemaker, as well as other devices.
Not only doctors of the medical aircraft but also pilots should have special skills. For example, they use some special landing method in order for the wounded to not get shaken. They also can keep aircraft at an altitude lower than usual if someone injured feels very badly.
"Avoiding deterioration in the state of the wounded" is the general principle and task of doctors and pilots of VITA's crew. So far, they have succeeded all the way through.
Anastasiia Bereza, Censor.NET