There is an ongoing debate about the roles of prehospital interventions, prehospital doctors and in general the benefit of providing more and more inhospital type interventions in a prehospital setting versus a simplistic transport model with minimal essential prehospital care.
Well here is the latest in the research trying to make the point one way or another!
Survival benefit of helicopter emergency medical services compared to ground emergency medical services in traumatized patients
Learning points :
- This study suggests advanced prehospital care delivered by physicians dedicated and trained to work on HEMS units, in Germany, can lead to better survival in more severely injured patients.
- Its a retrospective analysis of a trauma registry with fancy statistical controlling for variables. Be careful as biases are inherent to retrospective studies!
- The main interventions suggested to offer benefit by prehospital physicians are RSI/ETI and chest decompression including chest drain insertion
- HEMS with physicians on board are expensive services but do seem to offer improved survival benefit for severely injured patients