CareFlight to train first responders on Kangaroo Island

Aeromedical rescue service CareFlight this week delivered specialist trauma training to KI first responders as part of its world-class MediSim program.

Health services in rural and regional Australia can be stretched in emergencies and often the first people to arrive at the scene of a serious incident are local rescue volunteers or remote workers.

CareFlight MediSim program manager, Colin Brown, said those first five or 10 minutes could meant the difference between life and death.

“This is where the CareFlight MediSim program comes in. We send experienced paramedics and nurses to rural and remote areas, delivering world class trauma training to local first responders,” Mr Brown said.

“These first responders do an incredible job for their community and they could be at the scene of an accident before professional medical help arrives. In rural and remote areas, first responders can be on their own for a period of time so they need to be able to manage that situation appropriately.”

CareFlight’s MediSim was launched in 2011, training more than 4500 emergency service volunteers.

CareFlight MediSim is delivered at no cost to participants thanks to the support of CareFlight donors and Mr Brown credited KI GP, trauma specialist and anaesthetist, Dr Tim Leeuwenburg for making the local course happen.

 Dr Leeuwenburg meanwhile gave a huge thank-you to CareFlight and its supporters for bringing this vital training to Kangaroo Island once again.

“We are privileged to get another visit from the CareFlight MediSim team to deliver the Trauma Care Workshop on Kangaroo Island,” he said.

“The first link in the trauma chain of survival is invariably the first responder,” Dr Leeuwenburg said. “South Australia has well developed retrieval services but simply due to the distances involved, the reality is, in remote areas, response times are measured in hours not in minutes”

“The MediSim program gives those first responders practical, hands on task-training sessions on triage, topics from helmet removal and immobilisation to hemorrhage control and basic airway management – exactly what we need here”.

“We live in a small community – the more first responders who are trained and equipped, the more resilient our response can be.”