Emergency reflex action drill for traumatic cardiac arrest in a simulated pre-hospital setting; a one-group pre-post intervention study

Irene Bijl, Niek J Vianen, Esther M.M. van Lieshout, Christian HJ Beekers, Nancy WPL van der Waarden, Begüm Pekbay, Iscander M Maissan, Michael HJ Verhofstad, Mark G van Vledder*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Background: Emergency Reflex Action Drills (ERADs) are meant to decrease stress-associated cognitive demand in high urgency situations. The aim of this study was to develop and test an ERAD for witnessed traumatic cardiac arrest (TCA), an event in which potentially reversible causes need to be systematically addressed and treated in a short period of time. We hypothesize that this ERAD (the TCA-Drill) helps ground Emergency Medical Services (EMS) nurses in overcoming performance decline during this specific high-pressure situation. Methods: This was a prospective, experimental one-group pre-post intervention study. Ground EMS nurses participated in a session of four simulated scenarios, with an in-between educational session to teach the TCA-Drill. Scenarios were video recorded, after which adherence and time differences were analyzed. Self-confidence on clinical practice was measured before and after the scenarios. Results: Twelve ground EMS nurses participated in this study. Overall median time to address reversible causes of TCA decreased significantly using the TCA-Drill (132 vs. 110 s; p = 0.030) compared with the conventional ALS strategy. More specifically, participants adhering to the TCA-Drill showed a significantly lower time needed for hemorrhage control (58 vs. 37 s; p = 0.012). Eight of 12 (67 %) ground EMS nurses performed the ERAD without protocol deviations. Reported self-confidence significantly increased on 11 of the 13 surveyed items. Conclusions: The use of an ERAD for TCA (the TCA-Drill) significantly reduces the time to address reversible causes for TCA without delaying chest compressions in a simulated environment and can be easily taught to ground EMS nurses and increases self-confidence. Implications for clinical practice: The use of an ERAD for TCA (the TCA-Drill can significantly reduce the time to address reversible causes for TCA without delaying chest compression. This drill can be easily taught to ground EMS nurses and increases their self-confidence in addressing TCA-patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103731
JournalIntensive and Critical Care Nursing
Volume84
Early online date31 May 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 31 May 2024

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