This month the DRF Luftrettung has initiated an offering of a pre-hospital ultrasound course in Luxembourg for the first time. In cooperation with the Luxembourg anaesthetics association CMARL (Cercle des MÃ©decins AnesthÃ©sistes et RÃ©animateurs du Grand-DuchÃ© de Luxembourg) approx. 80% of the emergency physicians working in Luxembourg were trained on the use of the mobile sonography device â€œPrimedic HandyScanâ€. With the aid of this portable unit, emergency physicians called, for example, to a serious accident, can ascertain on the spot if a patient has suffered internal bleeding.
Altogether 38 emergency physicians working for ground-based ambulance services as well as air rescue, participated in both one-day pre-hospital ultrasound courses at the clinic in Kirchberg. The CMARL has supported the training, since Luxembourgâ€™s ground-based ambulance vehicles have been recently equipped with mobile sonography devices.
â€The aim was to provide emergency physicians with more certainty in handling the new sonography device thus minimising potential inhibitions. Mobile ultrasound can simplify the diagnosis of seriously injured patients on the scene of the accident and can be crucial when it comes to the selection of the clinic of destination. Our emergency physicians were able to profit from the long-term experience of the DRF Luftrettung training the P-Fast (pre-hospital focussed abdominal sonography in trauma)-methodâ€, explains Dr. Philippe Welter, vice-president of the Luxembourg anaesthetics association CMARL.
One-Day compact course
The course comprised a theoretical part and several practical units: After a short introduction to the basics of ultrasound diagnostics as well as a presentation of current scientific reviews and case studies, a training on the devices took place.
In the practical section the participants had the opportunity to perform approximately 30 hands-on-training sessions under realistic conditions. E.g. typical accident scenarios were set up in order to integrate preclinical sonography into trauma management. Difficult examination conditions were simulated with for example, cramped conditions in an ambulance vehicle, extreme light conditions as well as stuck â€œpatientsâ€ in a car.
The emergency physicians from Luxembourg were very positive about the course. Dr. Thomas Kirschning, sonography instructor of the DRF Luftrettung commented: â€œThe participants have reported to us that they have gained more confidence regarding the handling of the device. I was especially motivated by the fact that our colleagues from Luxembourg have quickly implemented their new knowledge with great discipline and dedicationâ€.
Certified instructor team
The team of seven instructors of the DRF Luftrettung consisted of specialists in anaesthesiology and internal medicine from the clinics in Ludwigsburg, Leonberg, Mannheim and Berlin. An intensive and interactive coaching took place with a participant-to-instructor-rate of two to one. â€œWith our certified instructor team we can offer courses for our own medical staff as well as for external personnel. With this first course abroad DRF Luftrettung is building on its long-term expertise in the field of pre-hospital ultrasound: Since 2004 our air rescue organisation has been using mobile sonography devices on its rescue missions and offering training sessionsâ€, explains Dr. Gerson Conrad, responsible for medical training within DRF Luftrettung.
About DRF Luftrettung
DRF Luftrettung sets high quality standards in the fields of flight and technical operation, as well as medicine. The aim is to attend to patients rapidly, comprehensively and holistically and to improve its work continually. To achieve this, the air rescue organisation conducts regular medical training sessions under DRF Luftrettung AkademieÂ®: The simulator, sonography and intensive care transport courses are offered for emergency physicians and paramedics of DRF Luftrettung as well as qualified personnel from clinics, rescue organisations and medical care institutions.
DRF Luftrettung operates 30 HEMS (Helicopter Emergency Medical Service) bases in Germany, Austria and Denmark with round 50 helicopters for emergency rescue and intensive care transport between hospitals, at eight bases even around the clock. On the international level DRF Luftrettung and LAR (Luxembourg Air Rescue) have been cooperating successfully for several years. Under the name of European Air Ambulance (EAA) they use six ambulance aircraft for worldwide repatriations.
In total, approximately 500 emergency physicians, 260 paramedics, 170 pilots and 70 technicians are on duty for DRF Luftrettung. In 2010 they flew a total of 36,900 missions.
For more information see: www.drf-luftrettung.de
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