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Can a single primary care paramedic configuration safely transport low-acuity patients in air ambulances?

https://arctichealth.org/en/permalink/ahliterature286059
Source
CJEM. 2017 Sep 22;:1-9
Publication Type
Article
Date
Sep-22-2017
Author
Homer Tien
Bruce Sawadsky
Michael Lewell
Sean Moore
Michael Peddle
Alun Ackery
Brodie Nolan
Russell D MacDonald
Source
CJEM. 2017 Sep 22;:1-9
Date
Sep-22-2017
Language
English
Publication Type
Article
Abstract
To determine if utilizing a single paramedic crew configuration is safe for transporting low acuity patients requiring only a primary care paramedic (PCP) level of care in Air Ambulances.
We studied single-PCP transports of low acuity patients done by contract air ambulance carriers, organized by Ornge (Ontario's Air Ambulance Service) for one year. We only included interfacility transports. We excluded all scene calls, and all Code 4 (emergent) calls. Our primary outcome was clinical deterioration during transport. We then asked a panel to analyze each case of deterioration to determine if a dual-PCP configuration might have reasonably prevented the deterioration or have better treated the deterioration, compared to a single-PCP configuration.
In one year, contract carriers moved 3264 patients, who met inclusion criteria. 85% were from Northern Ontario. There were 21 cases of medical deterioration (0.6%±0.26%). Paper charts were found for 20 of these cases. Most were self-limited cases of pain or nausea. A small number of cases (n=5) were cardiorespiratory decompensation. There was 100% consensus amongst the panel that all cases of clinical deterioration were not related to team size. There was also 100% consensus that a dual-PCP team would not have been better able to deal with the deterioration, compared to a single-PCP crew.
We found that using a single-PCP configuration for transporting low acuity patients is safe. This finding is particularly important for rural areas where air ambulance is the only means for accessibility to care and where staffing issues are magnified.
PubMed ID
28934993 View in PubMed
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Can a single primary care paramedic configuration safely transport low-acuity patients in air ambulances?

https://arctichealth.org/en/permalink/ahliterature303243
Source
CJEM. 2018 03; 20(2):247-255
Publication Type
Journal Article
Date
03-2018
Author
Homer Tien
Bruce Sawadsky
Michael Lewell
Sean Moore
Michael Peddle
Alun Ackery
Brodie Nolan
Russell D MacDonald
Author Affiliation
*Ornge,Mississauga,ON.
Source
CJEM. 2018 03; 20(2):247-255
Date
03-2018
Language
English
Publication Type
Journal Article
Keywords
Air Ambulances - standards
Emergencies
Emergency Medical Technicians - standards
Emergency Service, Hospital - statistics & numerical data
Female
Health Services Needs and Demand - organization & administration
Humans
Male
Middle Aged
Ontario
Retrospective Studies
Transportation of Patients - organization & administration
Abstract
To determine if utilizing a single paramedic crew configuration is safe for transporting low acuity patients requiring only a primary care paramedic (PCP) level of care in Air Ambulances.
We studied single-PCP transports of low acuity patients done by contract air ambulance carriers, organized by Ornge (Ontario's Air Ambulance Service) for one year. We only included interfacility transports. We excluded all scene calls, and all Code 4 (emergent) calls. Our primary outcome was clinical deterioration during transport. We then asked a panel to analyze each case of deterioration to determine if a dual-PCP configuration might have reasonably prevented the deterioration or have better treated the deterioration, compared to a single-PCP configuration.
In one year, contract carriers moved 3264 patients, who met inclusion criteria. 85% were from Northern Ontario. There were 21 cases of medical deterioration (0.6%±0.26%). Paper charts were found for 20 of these cases. Most were self-limited cases of pain or nausea. A small number of cases (n=5) were cardiorespiratory decompensation. There was 100% consensus amongst the panel that all cases of clinical deterioration were not related to team size. There was also 100% consensus that a dual-PCP team would not have been better able to deal with the deterioration, compared to a single-PCP crew.
We found that using a single-PCP configuration for transporting low acuity patients is safe. This finding is particularly important for rural areas where air ambulance is the only means for accessibility to care and where staffing issues are magnified.
PubMed ID
28934993 View in PubMed
Less detail

A prospective evaluation of the utility of the prehospital 12-lead electrocardiogram to change patient management in the emergency department.

https://arctichealth.org/en/permalink/ahliterature107306
Source
Prehosp Emerg Care. 2014 Jan-Mar;18(1):9-14
Publication Type
Article
Author
Matthew Davis
Michael Lewell
Shelley McLeod
Adam Dukelow
Author Affiliation
From the Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Medicine, The University of Western Ontario (MD, ML, SM, AD) , London, Ontario , Canada ; and the Southwest Ontario Regional Base Hospital Program (MD, ML, AD) , London, Ontario , Canada .
Source
Prehosp Emerg Care. 2014 Jan-Mar;18(1):9-14
Language
English
Publication Type
Article
Keywords
Decision Making
Electrocardiography
Emergency Medical Services - methods
Heart Diseases - diagnosis - therapy
Humans
Ontario
Prospective Studies
Abstract
Retrospective research has shown that 19% of 12-lead prehospital electrocardiograms (prehospital ECGs) had clinically significant abnormalities that were not captured on the initial emergency department (ED) ECG and had the potential to change medical management. The purpose of this study was to prospectively determine how many prehospital ECGs had clinically significant abnormalities not present on the initial ED ECG and determine how many prehospital ECGs changed physician management.
We conducted a 3-month, prospective cohort study of patients who had a 12-lead prehospital ECG completed by EMS prior to arriving at one of two tertiary care EDs. STEMI bypass patients were excluded. Physicians reviewed the prehospital ECG to determine whether there were any clinically significant abnormalities present on the prehospital ECG not captured on the initial ED ECG. Physicians recorded if and how the prehospital ECG changed their management.
A total of 281 patients were enrolled. Thirty-five (12.5%; 95% CI: 9.1%, 16.8%) prehospital ECGs showed changes that were not captured on the initial ED ECG (11 ST depression, 5 T-wave inversion [TWI], 2 ST depression and TWI, 12 arrhythmia, 2 arrhythmia with ST depression, 2 ST elevation, 1 unknown). Fifty-two (18.5%; 95% CI: 14.4%, 23.5%) prehospital ECGs influenced physician management. There were 30 (10.7%) instances where physicians were willing to refer the patient to an inpatient service based on information captured on the prehospital ECG, regardless if the initial ED ECG was normal.
Prehospital ECGs show clinically significant abnormalities that are not always captured on the initial ED ECG. Prehospital ECGs have the potential to change the management of patients in the ED.
PubMed ID
24028608 View in PubMed
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The utility of the prehospital electrocardiogram.

https://arctichealth.org/en/permalink/ahliterature125950
Source
CJEM. 2011 Nov;13(6):372-7
Publication Type
Article
Date
Nov-2011
Author
Matthew T Davis
Adam Dukelow
Shelley McLeod
Severo Rodriguez
Michael Lewell
Author Affiliation
Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Medicine, The University of Western Ontario, London, ON.
Source
CJEM. 2011 Nov;13(6):372-7
Date
Nov-2011
Language
English
Publication Type
Article
Keywords
Adult
Aged
Aged, 80 and over
Ambulances
Continuity of Patient Care
Electrocardiography
Emergency Medical Technicians
Female
Humans
Interprofessional Relations
Male
Middle Aged
Ontario
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)
Physician's Practice Patterns
Retrospective Studies
Abstract
The 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) can capture valuable information in the prehospital setting. By the time patients are assessed by an emergency department (ED) physician, their symptoms and any ECG changes may have resolved. We sought to determine whether the prehospital electrocardiogram (pECG) could influence ED management and how often the pECG was available to and reviewed by the ED physician.
A retrospective medical record review was conducted on a random sample of patients = 18 years who had a prehospital 12-lead ECG and were transported to one of two tertiary care centres. Data were recorded onto a standardized data extraction tool. Three investigators independently compared the pECG to the first ECG obtained in the ED after patient arrival at the hospital. Any abnormalities not present on the ED ECG were adjudicated to ascertain whether they had the potential to change ED management.
Of 115 ambulance runs selected, 47 had no pECG attached to the ambulance call record (ACR) and another 5 were excluded (one ST elevation myocardial infarction, one cardiac arrest, three ACR missing). Of the 63 pECGs reviewed, 16 (25%) showed changes not apparent on the initial ED ECG (? ?=? 0.83; 95% CI 0.74-0.93), of which 12 had differences that might influence ED management (? ?=? 0.76; 95% CI 0.72-0.82). Only one hospital record contained a copy of the pECG, despite the current protocol that paramedics print two copies of the pECG on arrival in the ED (one copy for the ACR and one to be handed to the medical personnel). None of 110 ED charts documented that the pECG was reviewed by the ED physician.
The pECG has the potential to influence ED management. Improvement in paramedic and physician documentation and a formal pECG handover process appear necessary.
PubMed ID
22436474 View in PubMed
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