The paper "Analysis of Respond Appropriately in Emergency Situations " is a great example of a case study on social science. Part 1: Timeline This section highlights the timeline of the “ Paramedic-Cradle Mountain Wilderness” incident. It also provides brief information on the events that took place in the course of this incident and how they helped in the decision-making process. Time Event 8:00AM – 4.00PM Paramedic on “ on-road” work shift 4:00 PM A call comes in informing the paramedics that a bushwalker in the Cradle Mountain National Park got injured in the wilderness area. From the information received; the victim probably has a fractured leg and the area where he is located is inaccessible through road therefore there is a need for a helicopter to be used in order to get there.
For this operation, only one medical personnel is required and basic medical equipment normally found in a road ambulance. 4:01-4:05 PM The paramedic packs and takes ambulance equipment such as; a drug box, some IV and fluid in it, a trauma kit with dressings, a spine board, a cardiac monitor, a neck collar, and a traction splint. 4:05-4:12 PM The paramedic is driven to the helipad outside Hobart.
While on the way, he brainstorms on the possible injuries that the patient may have suffered and also tries to decide on the appropriate materials and types of equipment that can be used to address the patient’ s condition since he could not fit everything in the limited space in the helicopter. 4: 12-4:17 PM Paramedic and policeman arrive at the helipad. The pilot warms up and reconfigures the helicopter. Helicopter seats are removed and replaced with a stretcher. Subsequently, the medical equipment and materials are loaded in the helicopter. 4:17-5:01 PM The flight time takes approximately 45minutes and the helicopter arrives at the scene at around 5 pm. 5:01-5:30 PM The Rescue team in the helicopter went around the grid reference that was provided to them.
The helicopter was about 100 meters above the ground however they were not able to locate the injured patient and the other bushwalkers. At this point, it was getting a bit dark, therefore the rescue team had to use a torchlight so that they can be able to illuminate the area in which the injured patient and the two bushwalkers were located.
Eventually, the team was able to locate them a couple of meters away from a place called the Weidorfers Towers. They were down a cliff face on a ledge. 5:30-6:00 PM After locating the patients and the other bushwalkers, the team tried to find a possible landing area for the helicopter but to no avail. Therefore, they were forced to land the paramedic so that he can meet with the rescue police who were on the ground and try to walk up to where the patient was.
The paramedic packed the equipment out of the helicopter and was landed safely on the ground where he and two police officers tried to head towards where the patient was located. The two police officers decided to cut through a straight line in the bush so as to get to the patient quickly. Given the fact that these policemen knew the area very, the paramedic agrees to their plan. He brought along the traction splint in a bag into which he could put equipment such as the survival collar, some IV equipment, two bags for fluid replacement, penthrox inhaler (analgesia), and some dressings. 6:00-9:00 PM onwards The rescue team on the ground penetrated through the thick bushes in darkness in search of where the patient was located.
After hours of walking, the team decided to rest for a while. The paramedic left some of the types of equipment on the footpath. They later met another rescue team along the footpath, who was able to bring the paramedic types of equipment that were left by the paramedic along the footpath.
The team decided to divide themselves into two groups so that they can be able to locate the patient as soon as possible. The paramedic decided to remain in this area and asked the team to get him as soon as they locate the patient. 9:30 PM onwards After locating the patient, the team came back to get the paramedic. The ground rescue team leave flares on the footpath so as to illuminate the dark way as they go back to where the patient is located. One of the rescue personnel helps the paramedic by carrying his bag.
He also tries to help the paramedic to rock climb however, in the process the rescue personnel falls about 10 meters down on the bushy side. Nevertheless, he manages to climb back uninjured. 10:00 PM onwards The paramedic reaches the location where the patient was located and found the patient cold, damp, and writhing in pain. He assesses the patient’ s condition and established that the patient has spinal injuries and had fractured his lower leg. He first begins to treat the patient’ s injuries.
He then places a cervical collar on his neck so as to relieve the pain on his neck. He also administers to the patient an anthrax inhaler so as to relieve his pain. In addition to this, he applies a traction splint on the patient’ s leg. 10:45 PM onwards The team erected a tent fly over the patient so as to protect him from the wind and rain. The patient was then placed inside a sleeping bag. Some of the rescue team personnel spent the night under the tent whereas the rest sat up the entire night until the next day. 6:00 AM onwards Another rescue team arrived the following day with a stretcher and carried the patient to the helicopter.
The helicopter was not able to find adequate space for land so it hovered around until the patient and the paramedic were hoisted inside. 11 AM The helicopter carrying the patient and paramedic arrive at Hobart. Part 2: Discussion In most cases, emergency situations tend to be stressful and as a result, there is pressure to respond appropriately in the shortest time possible. During emergency situations, it is essential to make appropriate decisions regarding the suitable course of action.
The decision made should be based on the situation at hand and one’ s experience and judgment. According to Klein (2003), intuition and experience are important factors in decision-making particularly during situations characterized by stress and time-pressure. Such situations can bring about severe consequences even when slight mistakes are made (Hammond, 2000). In the Oxford English Dictionary, “ intuition” is defined as the “ ability to get knowledge without the use of reason or inference” . Intuition provides people with beliefs that they are not able to justify (Flora, 2007).
On the other hand, “ experience” can be defined as a practical skill or knowledge that is gained as a result of direct participation or observation in a certain event or activity. Therefore, according to Klein intuition and experience when are important when it comes to making decisions in an emergency situation (Klein, 2003). Evidently, the case of the injured bushwalker is an emergency situation that requires appropriate decisions making so as to facilitate a suitable course of action. In this case, there were various factors that had to be put into an account and various choices that had to be made prior to the rescue mission of the injured bushwalker.
Foremost, it was essential for the paramedic to know about the condition of the injured bushwalker and the possible cause of injury. Furthermore, it was necessary for the paramedic to know when the injury occurred and where the injured bushwalker, in this case, the patient was located. This information aided the paramedic to make appropriate decisions that could contribute to the efficient and timely delivery of suitable medical attention to the patient. Some studies have established that failure to obtain relevant and accurate information before making a decision during an emergency situation can bring about negative effects that may even lead to the loss of life (Johnstone, 2002).
In emergency incidents, situational awareness has been identified as one of the factors that contribute to positive outcomes. During emergency situations, situational awareness is one of the key indicators of an effective reflective commander (Brunacini et al, 2004). Besides situational awareness and having the ability to avert untoward situations during an emergency, the time element is also essential.
Therefore, it is important for incident commanders and paramedics to be trained on how they can work effectively under time pressure (Mitroff & Anagnos, 2001). After a careful and quick assessment of the situation at hand and the information provided, it is important for an incident commander or a paramedic to decide on the best course of action. For instance, after the paramedic received the call informing him about the injured bushwalker, he carefully assesses the situation and quickly responds by deciding which medical gears, types of equipment, and medications that he will carry along to the rescue mission.
He decides that he will carry along with him, a drug box, some IV and fluid in it, a trauma kit with dressings, a spine board, a cardiac monitor, a neck collar, and a traction splint. The decisions made by the paramedic at this point proved to be helpful since the types of equipment and the materials that he carried helped to salvage the patient’ s condition after he was traced.
Brunacini, A. & Brunacini, N. (2004). Command Safety. Preoria: Across the Street Productions.
Cannon-Bowers A. & Salas, E. (1998). Making decisions under stress. Washington: American Psychological Association.
Crandall, B., Klein, G., & Hoffman, R. (2006). Working minds: A practitioner's guide to Cognitive Task Analysis. Massachusetts, London: MIT Press.
Feero, S., Hedges, J., Simmons, E. & Irwin L. (1995). “Does out-of-hospital EMS time effect trauma survival?” American Journal of Emergency Medicine; 13: 133-35.
Flora, C. (2007). “Gut Almighty”. Psychology Today 40(3), pp. 68-75.
Flin, R., & Arbuthnot, K. (2002). Incident Command: Tales from the hot seat (pp. 12-18). Aldershot England: Ashgate. (CSU - Bathurst - 363.34 FLI 1)
Hammond, R. (2000). Judgment under stress. New York: Oxford University Press Inc.
Hoffman, R. (2007). Expertise out of context: Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Naturalistic Decision Making. New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. (CSU - Bathurst - 796.082 FEM 1)
Klein G. (2003). The Power of Intuition. New York: Currency Books.
Johnstone, G. (2002). State Coroner’s Office, Victoria Linton Wildfire: Report of the Investigation and Inquests into a Wildfire and the Deaths of Five Firefighters at Linton on 2 December 1998 Melbourne: State Coroner’s Office.
Mitroff, I. &Anagnos, G., (2001). Managing Crises Before They Happen. New York: Amacom.
Wyatt, J., Beard, D., Gray, A., Busuttil, A., Beattie, T., Robertson, C. (1997). Timing of pediatric deaths after trauma. BMJ; 314: 868.