Chapman Freeborn Airchartering and Maximus Air have teamed to deliver the first MRI machine to Addu Atoll, the southernmost atoll in the Maldives archipelago.
Installation of the machine is part of the expansion at Hithadhoo Regional Hospital in Addu Atoll and will enable the delivery of a wider range of medical services to the 76,000 people it serves. Before delivery of the machine, patients needing MRIs had to fly 350 miles to the Maldivian capital of Malé.
Delivery of the machine and 166 components allowed the hospital to open on schedule.
To ship the MRI machine, Chapman Freeborn worked with Maximus Air for an Antonov An-124 charter from Al Maktoum International Airport in Dubai.
Use of the Maximus Antonov aircraft provided significant cost savings when compared with an alternative proposal calling for three separate flights using smaller Ilyushin IL-76 aircraft.
The delivery marked the first time an An-124 has landed at Gan International Airport, which completed a runway extension and other infrastructure upgrades in 2016.
Because of limited cargo handling capabilities at Gan, Chapman Freeborn project managers accompanied the cargo on the six-hour flight to help oversee safe unloading and handling of the MRI machine and components.
Chapman Freeborn’s Dubai commercial manager for cargo, Vikas Chaturvedi said: “Transporting this type of medical equipment on short notice requires careful planning and close attention to detail.
“Our strength lies with our global reach and the aviation professionals working with Chapman Freeborn. We want to thank the team at Maximus and Wings 24 for their valuable support.”
Maximus Air vice president for commercial, Samir Ramadan said: “The moment this enquiry came to us from Chapman Freeborn, we realised the importance of on-time delivery for this MRI machine.
“All departments at Maximus got into action and synchronised as this was first ever An-124 operation into Gan island. We are very proud to be part of this project and successfully operate this charter within 48 hours of its confirmation.”