Primary Survey Overview part 2

Safety is always an important aspect of the Ambulance clinician’s day to day workings as we never truly know what scene or environment we may be entering. We often are entering uncontrolled and unknown environments, meaning a continual dynamic risk assessment needs to be applied.   

Safety –  

  • Safety is always an important element that should be considered at every job:  
  • For example; where there may have been a Road Traffic Collision (RTC), an accident within the home, an assault, where vehicles or machinery are involved… All these present different dangers that need considering and protecting against, and an element of scene management and safety will need to be taken.  
  • It is no good if you become a casualty on scene, therefore consider what you can do to eliminate or reduce the dangers; correct Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), cordoning off areas, using additional equipment such as lighting, requesting further resources to help such as Police, Fire and Rescue Service (FRS), Hazardous Area Response Team (HART), etc.  
  • Consider if there are risk factors that require you to stand off from the address, or do you need to manage the scene before looking at treating patients. 
  • ERIC PD is a useful mnemonic in helping review and manage dangers or safety issues: 
  • E – Eliminate: Can you eliminate the risk completely?  
  • R – Reduce: Can you reduce the risk or danger? 
  • I – Isolate: Can you isolate the risk? 
  • C – Contain: Can you contain the risk? 
  • P – PPE:  Is there PPE you can wear to eliminate or reduce the risk? 
  • D – Discipline: What discipline, Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s), or protective actions can you take/maintain 
  • Although ERIC PD can’t cover every safety/danger aspect, it can help in eliminating, reducing, and/or increasing awareness of dangers that may present at scene.