In recent aviation news, the life-saving capabilities of the Apple Watch have once again taken center stage, as a British doctor utilized the revolutionary wearable to rescue a distressed passenger during a flight. Dr. Rashid Diaz, a 43-year-old medical professional from Hereford County Hospital in England, demonstrated the potential of the Apple Watch in a mid-air medical emergency.
On January 9, 2024, Dr. Diaz found himself on a Ryanair flight from Birmingham, England, to Verona, Italy, when an elderly woman onboard began experiencing difficulty breathing. Responding to a crew member’s call for medical assistance, Dr. Diaz stepped in and borrowed an Apple Watch from a flight attendant. This impromptu use of technology played a pivotal role in the successful intervention.
The elderly passenger, initially unresponsive to Dr. Diaz’s inquiries, was discovered to have a history of heart problems. Leveraging the Apple Watch’s blood oxygen app, Dr. Diaz monitored the woman’s oxygen levels, revealing dangerously low saturation. With this critical information in hand, he promptly requested an oxygen cylinder from the flight crew, stabilizing the woman’s condition until the plane safely landed in Verona.
Commending the effectiveness of the Apple Watch in a medical crisis, Dr. Diaz emphasized the need for such basic gadgets during in-flight emergencies. He underscored the importance of diagnostic health tools that could measure vital indicators such as blood pressure and oxygen saturation, potentially aiding in identifying issues like diabetic emergencies.
While expressing gratitude for Ryanair’s handling of the situation, Dr. Diaz suggested that airlines consider incorporating diagnostic health tools into their standard equipment. This proactive approach could enhance passenger safety and improve response times during emergencies.
Notably, the incident sheds light on the broader context of wearable technology, but it also raises awareness of legal challenges faced by Apple. The tech giant recently lost a court case involving allegations of patent infringement related to its blood oxygen measuring technology. Consequently, certain Apple Watches now face restrictions on the use of the blood oxygen feature.
This in-flight rescue serves as a testament to the real-world impact of wearable technology, showcasing how a device as common as the Apple Watch can become a crucial tool in medical emergencies. As the aviation industry continues to evolve, the integration of such gadgets may prove instrumental in ensuring the well-being of passengers high above the clouds.