Book Review

ABC of Transfer and Retrieval MedicineThe advent of regional trauma networks has transformed the way in which critically injured patients are managed in this country and as always, the pre-hospital phase of critical care has evolved accordingly. Not such a new development internationally, but a common theme globally, is the concept of the transfer and retrieval of critically ill and injured patients between treatment centres.Given the geographic and logistical challenges which exist in this country of admitting a patient directly to a definitive treatment centre, transfer and retrieval medicine represents a contemporary issue of some importance. Not unique to these shores of course and an international perspective is offered, particularly in relation to the composition of air crew and modes of transport available. But commonality exists across a number of areas including the physiology and pharmacology of transfer medicine and generic clinical considerations, all of which are considered in this volume.A large proportion of the paramedic workforce may not have had a great deal of exposure to this area of critical care and as always, the ABC approach effectively identifies the principal areas, all be it on a very superficial level. Where this inevitably leaves the reader short is any in-depth analysis of individual patient groups and medical conditions requiring a very specific type of care. The ‘softer’ aspects are not neglected, though an equally brief resumé is presented, considering non-technical skills, teamwork and ethical perspectives among other things—relevant, but considerably more complex than is allowed for in these pages.Well-informed content, experienced contributors in this particular field of medicine and a readily digestible read. A familiar note? You know by now not to expect detailed analysis from this format but a recommended read for those looking to develop a broad understanding of transfer and retrieval medicine.

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