Although the Republic of Kosovo has only existed since 2008, the eventful history of the region began much earlier. As a result, many Kosovans now live in other countries. Although the political situation has eased somewhat in the last few years, the high level of unemployment in Kosovo continues to prompt young people in particular to leave the country.
However, that does not change the fact that many Kosovans abroad still feel a strong connection with their homeland. They keep close contact with family and friends and often use their holidays to visit the area they grew up in. However, this attachment does not usually stretch to the Kosovan healthcare system: if expatriate Kosovans fall ill when visiting their homeland, they often go to great lengths to organise a patient transfer to the country in which they now live. Treatment abroad is also often sought for relatives who still live in Kosovo, if it is possible and affordable.
The healthcare system in Kosovo
The health sector in Kosovo is chronically underfunded and there is no statutory health insurance. While treatment is free in the family health centers, regional hospitals and the State University Hospital in Pristina, the system is completely overburdened and vulnerable to corruption. Those who can afford it choose to have treatment abroad.
Expatriate Kosovans mainly choose to be treated in the country where they live. Often these are Western European countries or the US, where healthcare standards are much higher. Patients who live in Kosovo also often prefer to seek treatment in these countries. Western European countries are relatively easy to travel to, and frequently there are family members living there who can assist the patient.
What happens for a patient transfer from Kosovo?
Most patients need to be medically accompanied during the patient transfer journey. Therefore, travelling independently is out of the question. Even a journey by ground ambulance can be such a burden on the patient, due to long journey times, that it would be irresponsible from a medical point of view. Therefore, an ambulance flight is the only realistic option for a patient transfer from Kosovo. Depending on what level of care the patient needs, this kind of patient transport will take place in either a scheduled airliner or an ambulance aircraft.
Patient transfer in an ambulance aircraft
If the patient transfer has to take place very quickly or the patient has acute or severe health problems, only a patient transfer by ambulance aircraft is appropriate. On board the aircraft, the equipment is similar to that of a Western European intensive care unit. This means that even the most seriously ill patients can be transported safely and quickly. An experienced flight doctor takes care of the well-being of the patient during the journey.
In addition to the medical advantages, rapid availability is the biggest benefit of an air ambulance. In most cases, an ambulance jet can be deployed to Kosovo the same day or the next. The aircraft will, in most cases, take off from Pristina Airport, the only passenger airport in the country. However, when choosing the destination, many smaller regional airports are also available: in contrast to a scheduled airliner, an ambulance aircraft can easily land at these local airports and thus bring the patient substantially closer to the destination hospital.
Patient transport in a scheduled airliner
Patients who are not acutely ill, but still need medical attention, can be transported on a scheduled flight. The prerequisite for this is that the patient must be able to sit upright for the duration of the flight. Transporting a patient lying down is only possible in exceptional cases: most scheduled airliners make the return flight shortly after landing at their destination. The time on the ground is so short that the installation of the necessary patient stretcher bed is not possible. However, we would be glad to check for you whether a lying down patient transport in a scheduled airliner is possible in your case.
Every patient transfer by scheduled airliner requires a lead time of one to two days. During this time the airline checks the patient's medical data and decides whether the transport can go ahead as desired. During the entire patient transport journey the patient is accompanied by a doctor or paramedic, who can intervene immediately if necessary.
Bed to bed patient transfer
If you decide on a patient transfer with the Medical Air Service, we will not only organize the ambulance flight, but will also take care of the entire patient transfer from bed to bed, including all ground transport. On the day of the patient transfer we will take the patient to the airport by ground ambulance, fly them, with medical supervision, safely to their destination and then bring them to the target hospital in a ground ambulance.
This bed to bed service has several advantages for you: you do not have to worry about the coordination and organization yourself, you can clarify any concerns with your designated contact person and can enjoy the feeling that experienced experts are taking care of everything for you.
How much does a patient transfer from Kosovo cost?
The exact price of a patient transfer from Kosovo depends on various influencing factors and is therefore calculated individually for each case. Above all, the destination and the required means of transport play a central role. In addition, the urgency of the transfer, the patient's state of health and the number of accompanying persons also affect the cost of a patient transfer. As part of your free consultation, we will be happy to provide you with a non-binding and reliable guide price for your inquiry.
We are your experienced, reliable partner for patient transfers from Kosovo. We are available for you every day around the clock for a free consultation or a non-binding quotation. Please contact us: