Critical CareEmergency MedicineHealth EquitySMACCCritical Care in Humanitarian Emergencies: Nikki Blackwell

Critical Care in Humanitarian Emergencies: Nikki Blackwell

Nikki Blackwell provides an insight into critical care in humanitarian emergencies.

Through her experiences in hunger emergencies, epidemics, natural disasters and conflict zones, Nikki has gained a wealth of wisdom and lessons.

She shares these from the SMACC stage.

Nikki talks about some of the practical things she does when working in resource poor settings. It starts with hospital hygiene to reduce nosocomial infections, and often entails Nikki working alongside the cleaners due to resource limitations.

Hand hygiene is difficult without running water and Nikki champions using the WHO Handrub Formulation.

Other challenges include cold chain storage, blood donations, limited monitoring and food and nutrition.

Nikki also discusses the challenges of working in different environments. Invariable the environment will be too hot… or too cold!

On top of this, working in remote locations often entails living with the other medical professionals you are working alongside. This presents interpersonal challenges.

Moreover, Nikki touches on the personal dangers of working in some of the more politically unstable locations around the world. Training becomes hugely important in resource poor settings when you are dealing with complex medical and surgical cases. Especially with less-than-ideal resources and equipment.

Nikki expands on what is possible with good training, intuition, and a Swiss army knife. If you do not do anything stupid, and you have basic resources backed up by sound training, it is amazing what you can achieve and who you can help.

She concludes by touching the future direction of care in resource poor settings highlight the potential for technology to make huge changes and advances.

Critical Care in Humanitarian Emergencies: Nikki Blackwell

Finally, for more like this, head to our podcast page. #CodaPodcast

Nikki Blackwell