Volume 13 Issue 9

Virtual reality training in cardiopulmonary resuscitation in schools

The UK average survival rate from out of hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) is 8.6%, which is significantly lower than in comparable countries where survival rates can exceed 20%. A cardiac arrest victim is two to four times more likely to survive OHCA with bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Mandatory teaching of CPR in schools is an effective way, endorsed by the World Health Organization, to train the entire population and improve the bystander CPR rate. Despite this, as with other UK home nations, there is significant variation in provision of CPR training within schools in Wales. Virtual reality (VR) technology offers an accessible, immersive way to teach CPR skills to schoolchildren. Computer scientists at the University of Chester and the Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust developed Virtual Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (VCPR), which can be used to teach children CPR skills. There were three stages: identifying requirements and specifications; development of a prototype; and management—development of software, further funding and exploring opportunities for commercialisation.

Racial disparities in emergency care for seizures in the United States

Background: Racial disparities exist regarding emergency medical services, and advanced life support (ALS) is superior to basic life support (BLS) for patients experiencing a seizure. Aims: This study aims to identify if there are racial disparities regarding access to ALS care for patients having a seizure. Methods: This study analysed 624 011 seizure cases regarding the provision of BLS rather than ALS care per racial group. Chi-square testing was used to check statistical significance and effect size was measured using relative risk. Findings: On average, non-white patients experiencing a seizure had a 21% higher relative risk of receiving BLS care than white patients. The highest disparity concerned American Indian patients, who had a 66% higher relative risk of receiving BLS care than white patients. Conclusions: Overall, non-white patients are less likely to receive ALS when experiencing a seizure than white patients, potentially leading to worse prehospital outcomes from less access to time-critical medications.

Pulse oximetry to predict the onset of acute mountain sickness: a literature review

Acute mountain sickness (AMS) is a common illness affecting people ascending to high altitudes. AMS may progress rapidly, and can be fatal if symptoms are neglected, acclimatisation processes fail or if the ascent continues. For many patients with AMS or AMS symptoms, medical assistance is given by mountain rescue and allied health professionals. Currently, the prediction of AMS in the high-altitude environment relies upon recognising and tracking subjective symptoms. However, owing to psychophysical factors commonly associated with high-altitude travel, such as stress and fatigue, subjective symptom recall is innately at risk of bias. There is no objective method for predicting AMS. This scoping literature review analyses the accuracy of pulse oximetry as a tool for predicting the onset of AMS.

A dystopian new normal

Looking back on his unconventional start in paramedicine, Barry Costello reflects on how to not only survive, but to thrive, as a paramedic despite the challenges of today's ‘new normal’

From qualified professional to student apprentice

As students prepare to return to their programmes this month, Lee Sweetlove provides insight into the struggles and joys of being one of the first students on the new tech to paramedic apprenticeship pathway in the East of England in this month's education edition of Paramedic Roles.

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