Arctic, Antarctica

Client with Life-threatening Illness Evacuated from Antarctica.

 Client with Life-threatening
Illness Evacuated from Antarctica.


An 82-year-old woman was traveling with her sister on a polar cruise to Antarctica. The trip took them to some of the world’s most rugged and remote terrain, to explore the enormous beauty of the Antarctic and its surrounding islands.

Midtrip, while crossing the Drake Passage, she fell ill with complaints of weakness and difficulty breathing. The ship’s doctor advised that she needed to be seen at a medical facility quickly as to rule out any other potential medical concerns and definitively treat the suspected pneumonia, a potentially life-threatening situation.

The ship’s captain liaised with Redpoint’s medical team, who arranged for an immediate transport from nearby King George’s Island, to a trusted medical facility in Punto Arenas, Chile.  Redpoint’s local air provider and the medical facility arranged to fly a doctor on a medically equipped jet to meet with the patient and accompany her back to Chile.

Upon arrival, she was diagnosed with pneumonia and treated with a course of antibiotics over several days until she was ready to travel. She has since recovered, and she and her sister are back home in the US.

Although she had been cleared to travel by her primary physician, pneumonia is a severe diagnosis for the elderly, and can often arise with little warning. Immediate and quality medical attention is critical, and we strongly urge any traveler to be sure they have evacuation programs in place, regardless of age.


Ripcord Travel Protection™ combines the best medevac and rescue services with travel protection benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Ripcord is powered by Redpoint Travel Protection, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.