Delegates have travelled from across the UK to attend the annual Aeromedical Conference organised by Essex & Herts Air Ambulance (EHAAT).
The theme for the event, sponsored by Specialist Aviation Services, Leonardo Helicopters and Anglia Ruskin University was `Paediatrics – Our Care, Their Future’. Speakers focussed on the causes, prevalence and changing face of paediatric cases and care in pre-hospital medicine.
An audience of 350, including doctors and paramedics from air ambulances across the UK, gathered at Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) in Chelmsford.
They were welcomed by Jane Gurney, CEO of EHAAT and Dr Susan Madden, Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Medical Science at ARU and Dr Ronan Fenton, Medical Director of EHAAT.
Among the speakers was Claire Smith, whose infant daughter Milli was airlifted to hospital by EHAAT in 2014. EHAAT’s Critical Care Team quickly recognised that exceptionally low blood glucose levels had caused her to stop breathing.
The day included presentations from Paediatric Registrar Dr Hannah Pool, Consultant Trauma Resuscitation Anaesthetist Dr Richard Smith, Adam Carr of EHAAT, Air Ambulance Paramedic of the Year, Dr Nigel Hare of Devon Air Ambulance and Andrew Morris MBE a helicopter transfer practitioner on board the Wales Air Ambulance transfer aircraft.
The audience heard keynote addresses by Dr Allan Goldman from Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) and Dr James Tooley of the Great Western Air Ambulance.
Ben Myer, Conference Lead and Clinical Manager at Essex & Herts Air Ambulance said: “We are delighted that so many of our colleagues from across the country were able to join us to share knowledge.
“After winning Innovation of the Year at the Association of Air Ambulance Awards for last year’s event, we wanted to ensure that we continue to push boundaries in our Aeromedical conferences going forward. The feedback we have had from delegates so far has been very positive.
“Working with children in traumatic situations is a reality for many of us – from pre-hospital care to frontline staff in all three emergency services, family liaison and more. As care providers, it is our duty to open up about our experiences so far, and focus on how we can provide the most effective care to our future generations.”
Conference delegate Sam Robinson, a student paramedic said: “The day has been informative and interesting. I can’t believe this is a free event, the standard has been so high.
“There have been lots of opportunities to learn from doctors and paramedics. Thanks to all concerned. Everyone involved in pre-hospital care should be encouraged to attend.”
Topics discussed during the day included:
- Whether ‘down-time in paediatric arrests is a good prognosticator
- The importance of dealing with fears and anxieties before treating children
- The value of training and being familiar with equipment in high pressure situations
- How and what we can learn from other industries
- Developing new systems for the benefit of patients and their families
- Continuing to learn from malicious threats and incidents
- Caring for each other and thinking about how paediatric cases might continue to affect us
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