Helping Travelers Every Day: Global Emergency Assistance Snapshot

From medical and security emergencies to more common concerns like a delayed flight or missing passport—here at On Call, every phone call (or live chat, text, or email!) we receive is an opportunity to help someone get prepared for travel or solve a problem while they’re away.

Read our latest global emergency assistance snapshot for an inside look at how On Call’s Global Response Center Teams work diligently around the clock, every day, to fulfill our mission of helping travelers in their time of need.

EMERGENCY MEDICAL ASSISTANCE

Medical Evacuation Assistance
On Call was contacted to assist with an emergency medical evacuation for a traveler who had been hospitalized in João Pessoa, Brazil. First, On Call obtained admission to a hospital in Sao Paolo with more resources to treat the traveler’s condition. Once the patient was stabilized and ready for onward travel, On Call arranged for an air ambulance evacuation to a hospital in the United States. Once the air ambulance team arrived at the traveler’s bedside in Sao Paolo, the team remained with the traveler until they were safely delivered to the U.S.

Medical Repatriation Assistance 
A traveler who had an accident needed medical repatriation from Rome to receive continued care close to home. On Call’s Global Response Center quickly coordinated the arrival of a Rescue Nurse at the traveler’s bedside and secured the patient’s admission into a New Hampshire hospital. The Rescue Nurse remained with the traveler until they were safely delivered to the hospital in New Hampshire.

Guarantee of Admission Payment
A traveler who was diagnosed with an enlarged lymph node was seeking immediate medical attention in Uganda. The traveler was unable to pay for the related medical expenses and contacted On Call for assistance. From there, On Call was able to place a guarantee of payment for the traveler’s hospitalization.

DAY-TO-DAY MEDICAL ASSISTANCE

Local Medical Referral
A project lead on a mission-based assignment in Nepal needed medical facility recommendations to have on hand in case someone from the team needed emergency care. Not being familiar with the area and local medical landscape, the project lead contacted On Call for assistance. On Call’s Global Response sent the project lead a list of facilities with recommendations for medical providers in the local area.

Mental Health Counseling Referral
A traveler on an assignment in Senegal reached out to On Call International’s Global Response Center to obtain a referral for qualified mental health counselors in the local area. The traveler could only communicate via WhatsApp or Skype, and On Call was able to arrange a virtual counseling session. When it was recommended the traveler seek in-person counseling, On Call was able to work with the U.S. Department of State to locate an English-speaking local counselor and arrange for the first appointment.

Vaccination & Testing Location Assistance
A traveler on an assignment in Bamako, Mali was seeing assistance with finding a Varicella (Chickenpox) Immunity Blood Test and COVID-19 Booster Shot. On Call’s Global Response Center team was able to advise the traveler of where they could go to obtain the test and vaccination locally; additionally, On Call scheduled and coordinated both appointments for the traveler.

DAY-TO-DAY TRAVEL ASSISTANCE

Lost Passport Assistance
A student traveler contacted On Call while on a program in Barcelona because she had left her passport in a hotel in Mallorca. The student was worried about how she would continue to travel and replace her lost documents. On Call worked with our local office in Spain which referred the traveler to the correct resource to obtain an emergency passport.

Prescription Replacement Assistance
A traveler with a chronic kidney condition required an emergency replacement prescription while on a trip to Turkey. After coordinating with the traveler’s treating doctor at home, On Call’s Global Response Center arranged for the traveler to see a local physician to obtain a new prescription. After the appointment, the prescription was available at a pharmacy close to the traveler’s hotel.

Onward Travel Advice
A student traveling in Spain contacted On Call’s Global Response Center to obtain information and advice for COVID-19 protocols related to leaving Spain. Once the most up-to-date information from On Call’s Team was provided, the traveler was able to confidently make decisions around the next phase of their travel plans.

SECURITY ASSISTANCE

Assistance in Ecuador
Several groups of travelers recently outreached On Call’s Global Security Team to request assistance during a period of nationwide civil unrest in Ecuador. As the groups decided to evacuate from Ecuador, On Call’s Global Security Team reviewed their routes for any potential impediments. In cases where travelers were required to stage at a hotel near the airport prior to their flights’ departure, On Call reviewed the security measures in place at the hotel, checked to see if the hotel had been directly impacted by civil unrest, and confirmed that the routes between the hotel and airport remained clear.  On Call’s Global Security Team closely monitored the travelers’ whereabouts until they returned home safe and sound.

Assistance in South Korea
A traveler in South Korea contacted On Call’s Global Security Team to request assistance with a stolen mobile phone, wallet, and identification. First, On Call’s Global Security Team confirmed that the traveler was in a safe location and did not need any further medical assistance. Then, On Call provided the traveler with information on where to find the closest police station to file a police report and offered translation support. Finally, On Call’s Global Security Team connected the traveler with the U.S. Embassy in South Korea so the crime could be reported at the embassy level and next steps could be determined from there.

Europe Intelligence
Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, On Call’s Global Security Team received outreach from multiple clients inquiring into safety and security advice for travelers in bordering countries and as well as for their traveling populations in other areas throughout Europe. Consequently, several consultations were held with these parties to address their specific concerns as well as to advise on future travel plans and programs. Additionally, On Call’s Global Security Team produces regular Incident Briefs detailing the potential impact of the invasion on the security environment across the region and continues to monitor the situation as it pertains to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

For over 25 years, On Call International has provided fully-customized travel risk management and global assistance services protecting millions of travelers, their families, and their organizations. Contact us today to learn more. You can also stay in touch with On Call’s in-house risk management, travel health and security experts by signing up for our quarterly Travel Risk Management (TRM) newsletter.