Medical EducationPrehospitalResuscitationSMACCSituational awareness in Resuscitation and Repetitive Practice

Situational awareness in resuscitation and repetitive practice

All healthcare professionals should have a strong sense of situational awareness.

Particularly in uncertain and unpredictable prehospital environments, situational awareness is an important skill to master. As we know, things can go south in an instant.

So, what is situational awareness? Isn’t it just about paying attention?

According to Mike Lauria, it is about much more than that. Situational awareness is a complex, cognitive process which involves perceiving the environment, comprehending the situation and taking steps to avoid error.

If you look at every major disaster in history, a loss of situational awareness is one of the top causative factors. In the prehospital space, we need to develop ways in which we can teach our colleagues and trainees about how to be acutely aware of their external environment and what is happening around them.

Mike suggests that there should be someone focused on local situational awareness and global situational awareness. Local awareness involves focusing 100% on the critical task at hand.

Then, other team members should be focused on global situational awareness. This could involve scanning the other areas of the patient, looking at the monitors, looking out for teammates and observing the surrounding environment.

In this talk, Mike Lauria talks us through how to build active systems of awareness and how to turn these systems into habits. He describes how to build a system of awareness and how to turn this behaviour into a habit.

To do this, we must start with a cue, have a specific action sequence and provide a variable reward.

Finally, we must repeat, repeat, repeat until the process becomes a habit.

Tune into a talk from DAS SMACC on Situational awareness in Resuscitation and Repetitive Practice.

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

Mike Lauria