Still feeling that I should alert pregnant women to easyJet’s timing requirement for the fitness to fly confirmation I ‘googled’ the topic, and found this from October 2008. The summary is that a woman who was 31 weeks pregnant, who had boarded an easyJet flight from Rome, was removed due to not having a fitness to fly letter which had been written within the previous 5 days, she “had flown to Rome from Bristol with the airline six days earlier with no questions asked” though. The woman then ended up being seen by a doctor, who carried out an ‘intimate examination’ and then communicated, via a translator, that the certificate he provided was not valid as she was not a registered patient. Guess what, having spent 300€ on accommodation, when they flew the following day easyJet didn’t ask for a certificate!
Reading the comments following the article came as a revelation to me. Many, many people agreed entirely with easyJet and feel that pregnant women shouldn’t fly. Some hypothesised upon the woman giving birth whilst airborne (hee hee), how it would be for the other passengers (!) if “she’d had a miscarriage, DVT” and I just loved this one from ex-cabin crew “No doubt she and her hubby will be one of those highly annoying types who take their infants on long haul flights and let them screech for hours on end expecting everyone else to tolerate it.” The really outstanding feature of the comments was the highlighting of the increased risk of DVT whilst pregnant and interpreting that as meaning that pregnant woman shouldn’t fly. Well, that’s as maybe but if you follow on from that rationale then women on HRT or those taking an oral contraceptive containing oestrogen should also not be flying. Let’s not confine ourselves to females, exclusion from flying should also be extended to anyone with heart problems, cancer, those who are obese or even just because they are male. All of these factors increase the likelihood of DVT so me thinks we should ban all obese males, and any woman past puberty. On a final note concerning DVT and the minimising of risk by airlines, do easyJet provide free water to passengers? Dehydration increases the risk of DVT.