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€220 Million EU Commitment to Safe COVID-19 Patient Transport Needs Fast Track

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Safe transport of contagious patients is essential in order to utilise hospital capacity during the second wave of COVID-19. Today President Ursula von der Leyen announced that the European Commission is making €220 million available to finance safe cross-border transfers of patients.

‘We experience that finance is at a critical point. Luxemburg Air Ambulance are crowd-funding EpiShuttles, while Greece ambulance service EKAB depend on well-doers to finance EpiShuttles. European patient transport is scrambling for money to fund safe isolation and transport. Time is of the essence to make these crucial funds available to organisations,’ Ellen Cathrine Andersen, CEO of EpiGuard says.

‘The spread of the virus will overwhelm our healthcare systems if we don’t act urgently,’ President Ursula von der Leyen said. She encourages member states to share data on ICU capacity, data on where capacity is lacking, and to increase cross border patient care. 

EpiGuard agrees and encourages the EU to make financing available as fast as possible.

‘We must be able to transport COVID-19 patients to where ICU capacity is available. Only when safe transport is in place can we utilise the full capacity of the entire healthcare system and ensure treatment for everyone. Healthcare workers are making an admirable effort in transporting patients. However, disinfection of helicopters, aircraft and ambulances after each transport takes so much time, the whole transport system may collapse,’ Ellen Cathrine Andersen says.

The EpiShuttle provides a completely sealed barrier between an infectious patient and the surrounding environment, protecting both craft and professionals. At the same time, it allows patient monitoring and full intensive care treatment during transport, including emergency procedures like intubation and insertion of central venous catheters. It is cost-efficient and can be re-used for the next mission.

‘EpiGuard is currently experiencing a surge in demand for the EpiShuttle. With the numbers of confirmed cases increasing, the need for safe transport of patients is rising. Current demand witnesses Europe in crisis and EpiGuard will scale up production. The EpiShuttle is NATOs stock listed and CE-marked as a class one medical device. We are prepared and ready to deploy,’ Andersen says.

EpiGuard is a Norwegian company established in 2015 providing better solutions for the safe transportation of contagious patients. Our team of medical experts and engineers developed the EpiShuttle based on analysis and clinical first-hand experience from previous global epidemics. Our medical background ranges from intensive care, infectious diseases, internal medicine and anaesthesiology, and transport medicine. EpiShuttle improves patient safety and care, the safety for healthcare providers, reduce costs and increase operational efficiency. Saving one – protecting everyone.

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