I had the absolute pleasure of participating in a fantastic pre-hospital anaesthesia & airway course in the warm and sunny climes of Cairns, Queensland. The course was hosted by the Australian Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) and run by the indomitable king of pre-hospital care, Dr. Minh Le Cong along with some help from Dr Peter Schuller. Dr. Schuller is an anaesthetist at Cairns Base Hospital with a special interest in pre-hospital care (and penguins but that's a topic for a different blog...).
For those of you who do not know, the RFDS QLD section retrieves over 10,000 patients per year - around 30 every day. Much of this work is carried out in remote areas with unforgiving landscapes and often in tricky conditions. The course was a real eye-opener, not only because it so thoroughly covered the theory and strategies relating to pre-hospital airway management, but also because it incorporated comprehensive training required to meet the logistical challenges one can expect to encounter during such operations. It provided hands-on experience and practice in problem solving precarious pre-hospital scenarios, as part of a retrieval team. In addition to the knowledge and skills gained, it was a thoroughly enjoyable and stimulating course, complete with expert tuition by retrieval specialists.
As a bonus for me, the course was sponsored by Critical Group and King Systems, who very kindly donated a King Vision video laryngoscope device as a prize for the course competetion (which was won by yours truly!). An unbiased review on this device will follow, with a head to head comparison with the McGrath Mac video laryngoscope which I am also currently testing.
Also, for those of you who are unaware, Minh Le Cong, who has featured prominently on the LITFL blog, EMCrit, as well as right here, has launched his own blog called PHARM (Pre-hospital and Retrieval Medicine) which can be found HERE (a link can also be found to the right in our favourites section). Minh does for Pre-hospital care what Weingart does for ED Critical care. Get busy, and go and check it out!