Air ambulances are important because hospitals are so expensive to build and run. The National Children’s hospital in Dublin, for example, cost nearly $2bn dollars!

In developing countries with limited healthcare budgets, it is impossible to build large hospitals in every single region, state or town. But in the event of a medical emergency, patients need to access hospital in the shortest possible timeframe to ensure survival.

Air ambulances are an essential, more cost-effective way to ensure people can get to specialist care when every second count.

This article highlights four of the most common fixed-wing aircraft used for air ambulance transport.

Learjet: Learjet is a Canadian owned, American aerospace manufacturer of business jets for civilian and military use based in Wichita, Kansas.

Learjet was one of the first companies to manufacture a private, luxury aircraft.

Lear 35/45 and 60 are most commonly used aircraft in air ambulance operations

Air ambulance teams love them because they have wide doors and they are cost-effective to operate

Flying Doctors Nigeria initially started with a Learjet air ambulance

  • Pilatus: Founded in 1939, Pilatus Aircraft Ltd is the only Swiss company to develop, produce and sell aircraft to customers around the world.

The most popular Pilatus aircraft for air ambulance work is the Pilatus PC-12 which is a single-engine turboprop with short range.

Air ambulance teams like this aircraft because of its wide door, ability to land on short landing strips, its spacious cabin and low operating cost. However, its range is shorter than the Learjet

  • Hawker: The history of Hawker Beechcraft originated in 1994 when Raytheon merged its Beech Aircraft Corporation and Raytheon Corporate Jets units.

The most popular aircraft models for air ambulance operations are the 1000/900/800.

The Flying Doctors Nigeria currently operates the 800. We love it because of its range, spacious interior and its versatility.

There are lots of different aircraft used for air ambulance operations across the world. This article has highlighted just three of them.

For more information about air ambulance work, impact and operations, read the following articles.

Our Impact Over Almost a Decade of Operation

Open Heart Surgery in an Air Ambulance