Is There a Doctor Onboard?

Physicians dread in-flight emergencies almost as much as you do. But things are looking up

As a physician who travels quite a bit, I spend a lot of time on planes listening for that dreaded "Is there a doctor onboard?" announcement. I've been called only once--for a woman who had merely fainted. But the incident made me curious about how often this kind of thing happens. I wondered what I would do if confronted with a real midair medical emergency--without access to a hospital staff and the usual emergency equipment. So when the New England Journal of Medicine last week published a study about in-flight medical events, I read it with interest. The study estimated that...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!