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GACA: Aviation medicine contributes to achieving highest levels of safety during flight
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 21 - 04 - 2021

The General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) is working to make the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's airports a safe healthy environment by harnessing all capabilities and by providing staff and professional specialties according to the highest international standards, in addition to having modern equipment working around the clock in all facilities with the aim of providing an integrated healthy environment for Saudi airports visitors.
As the safety and health of travelers is one of its priorities, GACA has designated a department concerned with the safety and health of travelers under the name of "aviation medicine".
This is a medical specialty that combines preventive, occupational, environmental and clinical medicine aspects with the physiological and psychological aspects of those dealing with the plane in flight (cabin crew, passengers, air traffic controllers, and maintenance engineers), by applying and updating the directives issued by the Ministry of Health and what is drawn from the World Health Organization (WHO).
Through the Aviation Medicine Department, GACA seeks to achieve aviation security and safety, develop an electronic aviation medicine system, update and develop relevant regulatory procedures, increase qualified expertise, and launch a guide for authorized doctors, as well as hold medical seminars and workshops in the main cities of Saudi Arabia to attract newly graduated doctors with competencies and appoint them in the Aviation medicine department.
Aviation medicine also has many tasks, including the medical fitness certification program, supervision over the certification program and setting the necessary medical standards, in addition to the continuing medical education and awareness program, holding seminars, lectures and workshops, disseminating updated information on the aviation medicine department, and awareness and education.
GACA cooperates and coordinates with the International Air Transport Association (IATA) to benefit from its advice and instructions on health issues related to air travel and on medical and health issues in the cabin, in addition to reviewing and updating IATA decisions and recommended practices related to medical care on board the aircraft and public health issues.
GACA is always keen on coordination and cooperation through international efforts made with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and it also enriches its expertise by cooperating with international organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Airports Council International (ACI) and other partners.
The aim is to assist in planning and preparing efforts to deal with diseases, epidemics and pandemics, as required by global health regulations and requirements, to prevent the spread of any epidemics and diseases. — SPA


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