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General Practitioners (GPs) are inevitably involved when disaster strikes their communities. Evidence of health care needs in disasters increasingly suggests benefits from greater involvement of GPs, and recent research has clarified key roles. Despite this, GPs continue to be disconnected from disaster health management (DHM) in most countries.
The aim of this study was to explore the perspectives of disaster management professionals in two countries, across a range of all-hazard disasters, regarding the roles and contributions of GPs to DHM, and to identify barriers to, and benefits of, more active engagement of GPs in disaster health care systems.
A qualitative research methodology using semi-structured interviews was conducted with a purposive sample of Disaster Managers (DMs) to explore their perspectives arising from experiences and observations of GPs during disasters from 2009 through 2016 in Australia or New Zealand. These involved all-hazard disasters including natural, man-made, and pandemic disasters. Responses were analyzed using thematic analysis.
These findings document support from DM participants for greater integration of GPs into DHM with New Zealand DMs reporting GPs as already a valuable integrated contributor. In contrast, Australian DMs reported barriers to inclusion that needed to be addressed before sustained integration could occur. The two most strongly expressed barriers were universally expressed by Australian DMs: (1) limited understanding of the work GPs undertake, restricting DMs’ ability to facilitate GP integration; and (2) DMs’ difficulty engaging with GPs as a single group. Other considerations included GPs’ limited DHM knowledge, limited preparedness, and their heightened vulnerability.
Strategies identified to facilitate greater integration of GPs into DHM where it is lacking, such as Australia, included enhanced communication, awareness, and understanding between GPs and DMs.
Experience from New Zealand shows systematic, sustained integration of GPs into DHM systems is achievable and valuable. Findings suggest key factors are collaboration between DMs and GPs at local, state, and national levels of DHM in planning and preparedness for the next disaster. A resilient health care system that maximizes capacity of all available local health resources in disasters and sustains them into the recovery should include General Practice.
Ambulance patients who are unable to be quickly transferred to an emergency department (ED) bed represent a key contributing factor to ambulance offload delay (AOD). Emergency department crowding and associated AOD are exacerbated by multiple factors, including infectious disease outbreaks such as the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Initiatives to address AOD present an opportunity to streamline ambulance offload procedures while improving patient outcomes.
The goal of this study was to evaluate the initial outcomes and impact of a novel Emergency Medical Service (EMS)-based Hospital Liaison Program (HLP) on ambulance offload times (AOTs).
Ambulance offload times associated with EMS patients transported to a community hospital six months before and after HLP implementation were retrospectively analyzed using proportional significance tests, t-tests, and multiple regression analysis.
A proportional increase in incidents in the zero to <30 minutes time category after program implementation (+2.96%; P <.01) and a commensurate decrease in the proportion of incidents in the 30 to <60 minutes category (−2.65%; P <.01) were seen. The fully adjusted regression model showed AOT was 16.31% lower (P <.001) after HLP program implementation, holding all other variables constant.
The HLP is an innovative initiative that constitutes a novel pathway for EMS and hospital systems to synergistically enhance ambulance offload procedures. The greatest effect was demonstrated in patients exhibiting potentially life-threatening symptoms, with a reduction of approximately three minutes. While small, this outcome was a statistically significant decrease from the pre-intervention period. Ultimately, the HLP represents an additional strategy to complement existing approaches to mitigate AOD.
There is evidence to suggest that patients delayed seeking urgent medical care during the first wave of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. A delay in health-seeking behavior could increase the disease severity of patients in the prehospital setting. The combination of COVID-19-related missions and augmented disease severity in the prehospital environment could result in an increase in the number and severity of physician-staffed prehospital interventions, potentially putting a strain on this highly specialized service.
The aim was to investigate if the COVID-19 pandemic influences the frequency of physician-staffed prehospital interventions, prehospital mortality, illness severity during prehospital interventions, and the distribution in the prehospital diagnoses.
A retrospective, multicenter cohort study was conducted on prehospital charts from March 14, 2020 through April 30, 2020, compared to the same period in 2019, in an urban area. Recorded data included demographics, prehospital diagnosis, physiological parameters, mortality, and COVID-status. A modified National Health Service (NHS) National Early Warning Score (NEWS) was calculated for each intervention to assess for disease severity. Data were analyzed with univariate and descriptive statistics.
There was a 31% decrease in physician-staffed prehospital interventions during the period under investigation in 2020 as compared to 2019 (2019: 644 missions and 2020: 446 missions), with an increase in prehospital mortality (OR = 0.646; 95% CI, 0.435 – 0.959). During the study period, there was a marked decrease in the low and medium NEWS groups, respectively, with an OR of 1.366 (95% CI, 1.036 – 1.802) and 1.376 (0.987 – 1.920). A small increase was seen in the high NEWS group, with an OR of 0.804 (95% CI, 0.566 – 1.140); 2019: 80 (13.67%) and 2020: 69 (16.46%). With an overall decrease in cases in all diagnostic categories, a significant increase was observed for respiratory illness (31%; P = .004) and cardiac arrest (54%; P < .001), combined with a significant decrease for intoxications (-58%; P = .007). Due to the national test strategy at that time, a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) result was available in only 125 (30%) patients, of which 20 (16%) were positive.
The frequency of physician-staffed prehospital interventions decreased significantly. There was a marked reduction in interventions for lower illness severity and an increase in higher illness severity and mortality. Further investigation is needed to fully understand the reasons for these changes.
Since December 2019, emergency services and Emergency Medical Service (EMS) systems have been at the forefront of the fight against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic world-wide.
The objective of this study was to examine the reasons and the necessity of transportation to the emergency department (ED) by ambulance and the outcomes of these cases with the admissions during the COVID-19 pandemic period and during the same period in 2019.
A retrospective descriptive study was conducted in which patients transported to the ED by ambulance in April 2019 and April 2020 were compared. The primary outcomes were the changes in the number and diagnoses of patients who were transferred to the ED by ambulance during the COVID-19 period. The secondary outcome was the need for patients to be transferred to the hospital by ambulance.
A total of 4,466 patients were included in the study. During the COVID-19 period, there was a 41.6% decrease in ED visits and a 31.5% decrease in ambulance calls. The number of critically ill patients transported by ambulance (with diagnoses such as decompensated heart failure [P <.001], chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD] attack (P = .001), renal failure [acute-chronic; P = .008], angina pectoris [P <.001], and syncope [P <.001]) decreased statistically significantly in 2020. Despite this decrease in critical patient calls, non-emergency patient calls continued and 52.2% of the patients transported by ambulance in 2020 were discharged from the ED.
Understanding how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting EMS use is important for evaluating the current state of emergency health care and planning to manage possible future outbreaks.
Considering the pediatric peculiarities and the difficulty of assisting this population in mass-casualty situations, this study aims to identify the main topics regarding children’s health care in mass-casualty incidents (MCIs) that are discussed in the Emergency Medicine area.
This systematic review was performed according to the recommendations of Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) and registered with the PROSPERO database of systematic reviews with the number CRD42021229552. The last update of the search in the databases was on May 27, 2021 and resulted in 45 documents to be analyzed. The inclusion criteria included the peer-reviewed academic papers in English, Portuguese, Spanish, and Italian languages; the databases used were PubMed, Scopus, MEDLINE/Bireme (Virtual Library of Health - VLH), and Web of Science, which execute the query on the topic, keywords, or abstracts. Also, to be included, documents that were available with full-text access through CAPES, Google, or Google Scholar. Books, non-academic research, and content in languages other than the presented ones were represented as exclusion criteria.
From the resulting papers, 21 articles served as the basis for this analysis. Revealed were the year of publication, the first author’s institution nationality, topic, and disaster management phase for each study, which allow other researchers to understand the main topics regarding children’s health care in MCIs.
The topics regarding child’s health care in MCIs found in the primary studies of this review, in order of frequency, were: Disaster Response (including the following sub-topics: simulation, education, quality of care, use of technological tools, and damage analysis); Triage; and Disaster Planning. The Emergency Medicine operation was focused on harm reduction after the occurrence of an MCI. Further studies focusing on the pre-disaster and post-disaster phases are needed.
As the understanding of health care worker lived experience during coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) grows, the experiences of those utilizing emergency health care services (EHS) during the pandemic are yet to be fully appreciated.
The objective of this research was to explore lived experience of EHS utilization in Victoria, Australia during the COVID-19 pandemic from March 2020 through March 2021.
An explorative qualitative design underpinned by a phenomenological approach was applied. Data were collected through semi-structured, in-depth interviews, which were transcribed verbatim and analyzed using Colaizzi’s approach.
Qualitative data were collected from 67 participants aged from 32 to 78-years-of-age (average age of 52). Just over one-half of the research participants were male (54%) and three-quarters lived in metropolitan regions (75%). Four key themes emerged from data analysis: (1) Concerns regarding exposure and infection delayed EHS utilization among participants with chronic health conditions; (2) Participants with acute health conditions expressed concern regarding the impact of COVID-19 on their care, but continued to access services as required; (3) Participants caring for people with sensory and developmental disabilities identified unique communication needs during interactions with EHS during the COVID-19 pandemic; communicating with emergency health care workers wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) was identified as a key challenge, with face masks reported as especially problematic for people who are deaf or hard-of-hearing; and (4) Children and older people also experienced communication challenges associated with PPE, and the need for connection with emergency health care workers was important for positive lived experience during interactions with EHS throughout the pandemic.
This research provides an important insight into the lived experience of EHS utilization during the COVID-19 pandemic, a perspective currently lacking in the published peer-reviewed literature.
Mass-casualty incident (MCI) algorithms are used to sort large numbers of patients rapidly into four basic categories based on severity. To date, there is no consensus on the best method to test the accuracy of an MCI algorithm in the pediatric population, nor on the agreement between different tools designed for this purpose.
This study is to compare agreement between the Criteria Outcomes Tool (COT) to previously published outcomes tools in assessing the triage category applied to a simulated set of pediatric MCI patients.
An MCI triage category (black, red, yellow, and green) was applied to patients from a pre-collected retrospective cohort of pediatric patients under 14 years of age brought in as a trauma activation to a Level I trauma center from July 2010 through November 2013 using each of the following outcome measures: COT, modified Baxt score, modified Baxt combined with mortality and/or length-of-stay (LOS), ambulatory status, mortality alone, and Injury Severity Score (ISS). Descriptive statistics were applied to determine agreement between tools.
A total of 247 patients were included, ranging from 25 days to 13 years of age. The outcome of mortality had 100% agreement with the COT black. The “modified Baxt positive and alive” outcome had the highest agreement with COT red (65%). All yellow outcomes had 47%-53% agreement with COT yellow. “Modified Baxt negative and <24 hours LOS” had the highest agreement with the COT green at 89%.
Assessment of algorithms for triaging pediatric MCI patients is complicated by the lack of a gold standard outcome tool and variability between existing measures.
Excited delirium, which has been defined as combativeness, agitation, and altered sensorium, requires immediate treatment in prehospital or emergency department (ED) settings for the safety of both patients and caregivers. Prehospital ketamine use is prevalent, although the evidence on safety and efficacy is limited. Many patients with excited delirium are intoxicated with illicit substances. This investigation explores whether patients treated with prehospital ketamine for excited delirium with concomitant substance intoxication have higher rates of subsequent intubation in the ED compared to those without confirmed substance usage.
Over 28 months at two large community hospitals, all medical records were retrospectively searched for all patients age 18 years or greater with prehospital ketamine intramuscular (IM) administration for excited delirium and identified illicit and prescription substance co-ingestions. Trained abstractors collected demographic characteristics, history of present illness (HPI), urine drug screens (UDS), alcohol levels, and noted additional sedative administrations. Substance intoxication was determined by UDS and alcohol positivity or negativity, as well as physician HPI. Patients without toxicological testing or documentation of substance intoxication, or who may have tested positive due to ED sedation, were excluded from relevant analyses. Subsequent ED intubation was the primary pre-specified outcome. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated to compare variables.
Among 86 patients given prehospital ketamine IM for excited delirium, baseline characteristics including age, ketamine dose, and body mass index were similar between those who did or did not undergo intubation. Men had higher intubation rates. Patients testing positive for alcohol, amphetamines, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, ecstasy, marijuana, opiates, and synthetic cathinones, both bath salts and flakka, had similar rates of intubation compared to those negative for these substances. Of 27 patients with excited delirium and concomitant cocaine intoxication, nine (33%) were intubated compared with four of 50 (8%) without cocaine intoxication, yielding a 5.75 OR (95%, CI 1.57 to 21.05; P = .009).
Patients treated with ketamine IM for excited delirium with concomitant cocaine intoxication had a statistically significant 5.75-fold increased rate of subsequent intubation in the ED. Amongst other substances, no other trends with intubation were noted, but further study is warranted.
Each year, 220 000 episodes of self-harm are managed by emergency departments in England, providing support to people at risk of suicide.
To explore treatment of self-harm in emergency departments, comparing perspectives of patients, carers and practitioners.
Focus groups and semi-structured interviews with 79 people explored experiences of receiving/delivering care. Participants were patients (7 young people, 12 adults), 8 carers, 15 generalist emergency department practitioners and 37 liaison psychiatry practitioners. Data were analysed using framework analysis.
We identified four themes. One was common across stakeholder groups: (a) the wider system is failing people who self-harm: they often only access crisis support as they are frequently excluded from services, leading to unhelpful cycles of attending the emergency department. Carers felt over-relied upon and ill-equipped to keep the person safe. Three themes reflected different perspectives across stakeholders: (b) practitioners feel powerless and become hardened towards patients, with patients feeling judged for seeking help which exacerbates their distress; (c) patients need a human connection to offer hope when life feels hopeless, yet practitioners underestimate the therapeutic potential of interactions; and (d) practitioners are fearful of blame if someone takes their life: formulaic question-and-answer risk assessments help make staff feel safer but patients feel this is not a valid way of assessing risk or addressing their needs.
Emergency department practitioners should seek to build a human connection and validate patients’ distress, which offers hope when life feels hopeless. Patients consider this a therapeutic intervention in its own right. Investment in self-harm treatment is indicated.
The sudden outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has caused tremendous challenges to the medical system. The government and hospitals have taken robust measures to curb the spread of the deadly virus. Its impact on routine medical services is gradually being taken seriously.
To identify the impact of the novel Coronavirus pandemic on emergency department (ED) patient flow and the performance of the routine ED service.
This retrospective cohort study was undertaken in a tertiary public teaching hospital ED in Chengdu, China. ED data of patients were routinely collected to compare demographic, clinical characteristics and outcomes during an 8-week period from January 1, 2019 to February 25, 2020. Data were analyzed with the chi-square statistical test.
Over the study periods, there were 31855 and 25244 patients presented to the ED in 2019 and 2020 respectively. During the pandemic period in 2020, the daily number of average ED visits was lower than that in 2019 (430 ± 134.9 versus 572 ± 38.6, P = 0.00), with fewer triage 1&2 cases (145 ± 33.3 versus 178 ± 15.0, P = 0.00). Nevertheless, the mortality increased remarkably during the pandemic period in 2020 (0.2% versus 0.1%, P = 0.009), with higher APACHE II scores (28 versus 19, P = 0.022) and shorter ED elapsed time (0.2 versus 1.4 days, P = 0.016) among these death cases.
The COVID-19 pandemic had an evident impact on the patient’s behavioral patterns and routine emergency services, which caused higher ED mortality.
This study evaluates the usefulness, safety, and outcomes of operating a pretriage screening clinic and an expanded preemptive quarantine area in the emergency department (ED) during a regional coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak.
A descriptive cross-sectional, retrospective study conducted in a single institution. General patient demographic data, initial vital sign, symptoms, and patient outcome was collected from January to March of 2020. Data were compared according to the implementation of a new protocol involving pretriage screening and risk stratification. Outcome was also analyzed according to quarantine areas, including conventional, negative pressured, cohort, or preemptive quarantine area.
The pretriage clinic lowered the volume of low severity patients entering emergency department. Preemptive and cohort quarantine area provided more care to febrile patients compared with conventional quarantine area with longer length of hospital stay and lower mortality. After implementing the new protocol, emergency department in the study hospital was not closed again.
In a regional outbreak of an epidemic, pretriage clinic safely screened infectious patients from entering ED. Expanded preemptive quarantine area increased surge capacity on quarantine area. An infectious disease protocol implementing 2 treatment areas may contribute to preserve and maintain ED function.
It remains unclear which mass-casualty incident (MCI) triage tool best predicts outcomes for child disaster victims.
The primary objective of this study was to compare triage outcomes of Simple Triage and Rapid Treatment (START), modified START, and CareFlight in pediatric patients to an outcomes-based gold standard using the Criteria Outcomes Tool (COT). The secondary outcomes were sensitivity, specificity, under-triage, over-triage, and overall accuracy at each level for each MCI triage algorithm.
Singleton trauma patients under 16 years of age with complete prehospital, emergency department (ED), and in-patient data were identified in the 2007-2009 National Trauma Data Bank (NTDB). The COT outcomes and procedures were translated into ICD-9 procedure codes with added timing criteria. Gold standard triage levels were assigned using the COT based on outcomes, including mortality, injury type, admission to the hospital, and surgical procedures. Comparison triage levels were determined based on algorithmic depictions of the three MCI triage tools.
A total of 31,093 patients with complete data were identified from the NTDB. The COT was applied to these patients, and the breakdown of gold standard triage levels, based on their actual clinical outcomes, was: 17,333 (55.7%) GREEN; 11,587 (37.3%) YELLOW; 1,572 (5.1%) RED; and 601 (1.9%) BLACK. CareFlight had the best sensitivity for predicting COT outcomes for BLACK (83% [95% confidence interval, 80%-86%]) and GREEN patients (79% [95% CI, 79%-80%]) and the best specificity for RED patients (89% [95% CI, 89%-90%]).
Among three prehospital MCI triage tools, CareFlight had the best performance for correlating with outcomes in the COT. Overall, none of three tools had good test characteristics for predicting pediatric patient needs for surgical procedures or hospital admission.
A delusion of parasitosis is defined as the fixed, false belief of infestation by invisible organisms or fibrous material of unknown origin. The differential diagnosis is true infection, substance use disorder, dementia or other neuropsychiatric disease.
Our goal was to characterize delusions of parasitosis, classically named Ekbom syndrome, among individuals attending our emergency department (ED).
Over a four-year period (2017-2020), we carried out a retrospective case-register study of patients with DSM-5 Ekbom syndrome attending an ED that provides mental health services to an area of nearly 450.000 inhabitants in Sabadell (Barcelona, Spain).
There were 13 eligible patients: 7 were diagnosed for the first time and 6 had multiple episodes. Female-to-male ratio was 1.6:1; average age was 56.9. The most common diagnosis was delusional disorder (n=5;8.5%), followed by schizophrenia (n=3;23.1%) and organic disorders (n=2;15.4%). Origin: Africa (n=5;38.5%), South-America (n=4;30.8%) and Spain (n=4;30.8%). Fifty percent showed poor treatment compliance. Antipsychotics used: risperidone (n=8;61.54%), olanzapine (n=4;30.8%). Five patients received antidepressants. Most patients had previously been seen by other medical specialties (internal medicine, dermatology and hematology). ‘’Match box sign’’: 7 patients (53.8%). Cerebral atrophy was present on brain scan in 4 patients. After discharge: acute psychiatric unit (n=7), outpatient appointments (n=4), day hospital (n=1) and 1 to a psychogeriatric unit.
Delusions of parasitosis are rare in our emergency department. The typical patient is a postmenopausal woman, a visitor or immigrant to Spain. Effective treatment requires a focus on cultural, gender, and age aspects, with close cooperation between psychiatry and other relevant specialties.
The 2019 coronavirus epidemic (CoViD-19) in Italy originated in Lombardy, on February 21, 2020. The Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo di Pavia has been involved in the management of the outbreak since its beginning. ED’ psychiatric population is considered fragile, at risk of under triage.
We evaluated all the population who went to the ED for mental disorder to assess the severity of cases evaluated as exit code and rate of hospitalization.
We evaluated all patients accessing our ED for mental disorder from February 22 to May 1, 2020 and during the same period of the previous year.
We enrolled 345 patients. There was a severe reduction in the total number of accesses for mental disorder: 142 in the CoViD period and 203 in 2019. The vital parameters, age (mean about 40 years) and sex were overlapping without statistically significant differences. The priority codes for the medical examination were not different. CoViD pandemic patients have higher discharge severity codes (yellow and red) more frequently than in the reference period (9.9% vs 5.9%) and more frequently need hospitalization (25.3% vs 18.6%).
The epidemic has led to a reduction of accesses for mental disorder. Patients had more frequent hospitalization needs and more severe exit codes. the data may be due to the fact that during the pandemic only the most serious patients access the E.D., but also to the fact that a pandemic has contributed to destabilizing this class of fragile patients.
During the 1st wave of CoViD-19 pandemic there was a drastic reduction in total number of accesses, with more serious cases and a exorbitant increase in crowding, due to access block.
evaluate population who went to ED for (1) mental disorders requesting a psychiatric visit and for (2) intossication and substance abuse, between the first and second wave of the coronavirus pandemic
We enrolled all patients who went at our ED from May 1 to October 20, 2020 and during the same period of 2019. We analized: vital parameters, age, sex, exit severity codes, hospitalization rate, Crowding input factors (number of access, waiting time, priority time to doc), Crowding throughput factors (LOS: Length Of ED Stay), Crowding output factors (percentage of access block; Total Access Block Time).
The results are shown in table 1
May1- October 20,2019
May1- October 20, 2019
number of ED access
higher (yellow and red) priority time to doc (%)
worse exit severity codes (%)
rate of hospitalization (%)
average waiting times (min)
LOS lenght of stay (min)
access block (%)
Total Access Block Time: examination rooms (min)
Total Access Block Time: holding area (min)
We would like to thank all employees of the IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo Foundation for their extraordinary efforts during the pandemic.
The 2019 coronavirus epidemic (CoViD-19) in Italy originated in Lombardy, on February 21, 2020. Crowding has been defined as a worldwide problem as cause of reduced quality of care and patient satisfaction. It is due and identified by three orders of factors: those at the access (input); those related to the patient’s process (throughput); and those at the exit from the ED (output).
We evaluated all the population who went to ED for intossication and substance abuse. Due to the high level of care needed by these, an excessive duration of LOS (length of Stay) can be counterproductive.
We evaluated all patients accessing our ED for intossication and substance abuse from February 22 to May 1, 2020 and during the same period of the previous year.
We enrolled 142 patients. The Crowding input factors are lower in the pandemic period: reduced attenders (41 vs 101) and reduced average waiting times (59 min vs 86 min). The Crowding throughput factors have instead worsened: LOS for both the visit rooms (810 vs 544 min) and the holding area (1205 min vs 947 min). The Crowding output factors also worsened: the percentage of access block is higher during the pandemic (10% vs 5%). The Total Access Block Time is significantly higher in the CoViD period for the holding area (1053 vs 930 min).
The pandemic period presented a worsened crowding for these patients due to the Access Block.
The 2019 coronavirus epidemic (CoViD-19) in Italy originated in Lombardy, on February 21, 2020. Crowding has been defined as a worldwide problem and causes reduced quality of care. It is due and identified by three orders of factors: those at the access (input); those related to the patient’s process (throughput); and those at the exit from the ED (output).
We evaluated all the population who went to ED for mental disorder. Due to the high level of care needed and the simultaneous exposure to risk factors, an excessive duration of ED process can be counterproductive.
We evaluated all patients accessing our ED for mental disorder from February 22 to May 1, 2020 and during the same period of the previous year.
We enrolled 345 patients. The Crowding input factors are lower in the pandemic period: reduced attenders (142 vs 203) and reduced average waiting times (40 min vs 54 min). The Crowding throughput factors have instead worsened: LOS (length of stay) for both visit rooms (383 vs 271 min) and holding area (1735 min vs 797 min). The Crowding output factors also worsened: the percentage of access block is higher during the pandemic (100% vs 20%). The Total Access Block Time is significantly higher in the CoViD period for both the visit rooms (3.239 vs 649 min) and the holding area (590 vs 185 min).
The pandemic period presented a worsened crowding for these patients due to the Access Block.
The 2019 coronavirus epidemic (CoViD-19) in Italy originated in Lombardy, on February 21, 2020. The Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo di Pavia has been involved in the management of the outbreak since its beginning
We evaluated all the population who went to the ED for intossication and substance abuse to assess the severity of cases evaluated as exit code and rate of hospitalization.
We enrolled all patients accessing our ED for intossication and substance abuse form February 22 to May 1, 2020 and during the same period of the previous year.
We enrolled 142 patients. 41 in the CoViD period and 101 in 2019. The vital parameters, and sex were overlapping. patients during the pandemic were younger (38 vs 46) The priority codes for the medical examination were not different. CoViD pandemic patients have higher codes (yellow and red) for the medical examination (66% vs 59%); discharge severity codes (red) more frequently than in the reference period (2.4% vs 0.9%) and more frequently need hospitalization (26.8% vs 16.8%).
The epidemic has led to a reduction of accesses for intossication and substance abuse. Patients had more frequent hospitalization needs and more severe exit codes. the data may be due to the fact that during the pandemic only the most serious patients access the E.D., but also to the fact that a pandemic has contributed to destabilizing this class of fragile patients.
Prehospital pediatric tracheal intubation (TI) is a possible life-saving intervention that requires adequate experience to mitigate associated complications. The pediatric airway and respiratory physiology present challenges in addition to a relatively rare incidence of prehospital pediatric TI.
The aim of this study was to describe characteristics and outcomes of prehospital TI in pediatric patients treated by critical care teams.
This is a sub-group analysis of all pediatric (<16 years old) patients from a prospective, observational, multi-center study on prehospital advanced airway management in the Nordic countries from May 2015 through November 2016. The TIs were performed by anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists staffing six helicopter and six Rapid Response Car (RRC) prehospital critical care teams.
In the study, 74 children were tracheal intubated, which corresponds to 3.7% (74/2,027) of the total number of patients. The pediatric patients were intubated by very experienced providers, of which 80% had performed ≥2,500 TIs. The overall TI success rate, first pass success rate, and airway complication rate were in all children (<16 years) 98%, 82%, and 12%. The corresponding rates among infants (<2 years) were 94%, 67%, and 11%. The median time on scene was 30 minutes.
This study observed a high overall prehospital TI success rate in children with relatively few associated complications and short time on scene, despite the challenges presented by the pediatric prehospital TI.
To describe the perceived qualities of successful palliative care (PC) providers in the emergency department (ED), barriers and facilitators to ED–PC, and clinicians’ perspectives on the future of ED–PC.
This qualitative study using semi-structured interviews was conducted in June–August 2020. Interviews were analyzed via a two-phase Rapid Analysis. The study's primary outcomes (innovations in ED–PC during COVID) are published elsewhere. In this secondary analysis, we examine interviewee responses to broader questions about ED–PC currently and in the future.
PC providers perceived as successful in their work in the ED were described as autonomous, competent, flexible, fast, and fluent in ED language and culture. Barriers to ED–PC integration included the ED environment, lack of access to PC providers at all times, the ED perception of PC, and the lack of a supporting financial model. Facilitators to ED–PC integration included proactive identification of patients who would benefit from PC, ED-focused PC education and tools, PC presence in the ED, and data supporting ED–PC. Increased primary PC education for ED staff, increased automation, and innovative ED–PC models were seen as areas for future growth.
Significance of results
Our findings provide useful information for PC programs considering expanding their ED presence, particularly as this is the first study to our knowledge that examines traits of successful PC providers in the ED environment. Our findings also suggest that, despite growth in the arena of ED–PC, barriers and facilitators remain similar to those identified previously. Future research is needed to evaluate the impact that ED–PC initiatives may have on patient and system outcomes, to identify a financial model to maintain ED–PC integration, and to examine whether perceptions of successful providers align with objective measures of the same.