Elements Update – Introducing the eCard

Iridia Elements - Medical Education

As a responsible member of a global community, we’re also committed to corporate responsibility and environmental sustainability which is why we are so excited to share the Heart & Stroke Foundation’s move to greener sustainability with the launch of eCard!

As of February 18, 2015 successful students of any Heart & Stroke Foundation program (eg: ACLS or PALS)  will receive their completion certificate via eCard. After course completion students will receive an email with information to access their digital proof of course completion, removing the need to distribute a physical completion card by mail.

During the implementation phase students will continue to have the option to receive a physical copy of their certification, free of charge, if indicated in advance of your course date. In order to help facilitate the transition Iridia will offer the option to receive either a digital certificate (eCard) or a physical completion card when you register for a course on our website.

The second phase-in period will commence in May of 2015 when a dispensary fee will be associated with the request of a Heart & Stroke Completion Card. eCards will remain free of charge and is the promoted choice for course participants. Both options will remain available on our website when registering for a course.

FAQs pertaining to eCards have been posted on the Heart and Stroke resuscitation portal however we are happy to answer any questions, comments or concerns.

We look forward to continuing our support with the Heart & Stroke Foundation and the public in sharing the “Go Green” spirit! Stay tuned for updates in the next coming weeks.

 

Our Medical Education Platform Expands!

Medical Education

We are excited to announce the newest update to our medical education programs: The new Learning Studio!

During the summer and fall of 2014, Iridia Medical worked on finding a dedicated space to host educational programs. The new classroom is located near our headquarters and is dedicated entirely to our educational programs. With an open classroom design and two breakout rooms for group work, we’ve created an optimal learning environment. Additionally, the space features an office for instructor privacy and a kitchen for student comforts.

The self-contained space is a great example of one of the many innovative advances our Education Department has showcased for the New Year.

Medical Education at IridiaMedical Education Stats

Iridia Medical provides engaging, practical emergency medical training to healthcare personnel and lay rescuers. Rooted in best practices, content is delivered by highly experienced medical professionals, who balance learner skill, knowledge, and experience.

Our courses and workshops meet and exceed all recommendations from:

Medical Education Recommendations

To provide the highest quality medical education, all of our workshops can be customized to meet your organization’s targeted educational needs and booked for private groups across British Columbia.

To view the schedule, please visit our website, www.iridiamedical.com or contact us directly to discuss the possibilities of developing a course specialized for your group and to register for any of our courses below.

 

The Chilling Effects of Frostbite

Frostbite

At Iridia, many of our paramedics work in remote oil and gas camps in northern British Columbia. We encourage them to be prepared for whatever they may come across in these regions. Lately, frostbite has been a key concern.

In recent days much of Canada has been dowsed in northern-like temperatures. With temperatures reaching -30°C in some areas, it’s important for everyone to understand symptoms and causes of frostbite.

Frostbite occurs when the skin and body tissue just underneath it freezes. Your skin becomes very cold, then numb, hard and pale. Frostbite typically affects smaller, more exposed areas of your body, such as your fingers and ears.

What are the stages of frostbite?

The first stage of frostbite is frostnip — a mild form of frostbite in which your skin turns red and feels very cold. Frostnip doesn’t do permanent damage.

The second stage of frostbite appears as reddened skin that turns white or very pale. The skin may remain soft, but some ice crystals may form in the tissue. Skin may begin to feel deceptively warm — a sign of serious skin involvement.

As frostbite progresses, it affects all layers of the skin, including the tissues that lie below. Deceptive numbness may occur in which all sensation of cold, pain or discomfort is lost. Joints or muscles may no longer work. Afterward, the area turns black and hard as the tissue dies.

What are the symptoms of frostbite?

  • A slightly painful, prickly or itching sensation
  • White or grayish-yellow skin
  • Hard or waxy-looking skin
  • A cold or burning feeling
  • Numbness
  • Clumsiness due to joint stiffness
  • Blistering, in severe cases

frostbite treatment

What are the causes of frostbite?

Frostbite occurs in two ways:

Frostbite can occur in conjunction with hypothermia — a condition in which your body loses heat faster than it produces heat, causing dangerously low body temperature. When core body temperature lowers, it decreases circulation and threatens vital organs. This triggers a “life over limb” response, meaning your body protects vital organs, sometimes at the expense of extremities. With decreased circulation, your body temperature lowers and the tissue freezes at -2C.

Frostbite can also occur with direct contact. If you’re in direct contact with something very cold, such as ice or metal, heat is conducted away from your body. Such exposure lowers the temperature of the skin and freezes the tissue.

As always, stay safe. If you experience any of the symptoms above, seek medical attention. For more information, head over to CBC to learn more about frostbite and how it affects you at different wind-chill levels. 

 

Immediate Feedback = CPR Success

Ambu Smartman CPR

When we’re trying to learn a new skill, whether it’s learning to play the guitar, writing an essay, or performing CPR, the immediacy of the feedback we receive is a critical factor affecting how quickly we improve our skills.

If, over time, we continually perform an action incorrectly, it becomes more entrenched in our memory – and more difficult to correct at a later time.  Imagine a golfer with a swing that consistently produces a hook.  If after several years she attempts fix her swing, it will be an uphill battle in comparison to addressing the problem the moment the hook first emerged.

The same logic applies to CPR training.

As a leader in the development of medical education workshops, Iridia Medical understands the importance of immediate feedback when learning CPR.  That’s why, earlier this year, we introduced a cutting-edge, new manikin called the Ambu SmartMan in our educational workshops.

The Ambu SmartMan is an award-winning, innovative training tool that helps healthcare providers improve their CPR and Bag-Mask Ventilation skills.  It connects via USB to a computer and provides real-time visual feedback results while students are performing CPR.

The feedback provided assesses performance quality according to:

  • Compression depth and ration
  • Chest recoil during compressions
  • Frequency of ventilations
  • Volume of air and ration of air delivery during compressions

Ambu Smartman CPR Demo

Colour-coded bars depict the quality of each compression and ventilation that is being performed on the manikin.  For example, red bars indicate that chest compressions are not deep enough; upon seeing this information in real-time, the student can quickly adjust her method to achieve the desired green colour.

Ambu SmartMan also allows for two students to practice a coordinated response to a Sudden Cardiac Arrest.  If students are too slow to initiate CPR, or perform out of sync, the manikin will slowly show vital signs deteriorating. 

Recently, in controlled tests, EMS magazine reported that with only one minute of the Ambu SmartMan feedback training, CPR providers were able to improve their CPR performance from a score of 20% to 80%.

When it comes to CPR, performing the steps quickly, calmly, and at a high level of competency can mean the difference between life and death.  Ambu SmartMan offers an objective means to measure our CPR skills and competency and facilitates continual improvement of CPR skills.

Ambu Smartman CPR Demo

As always, Iridia Medical is dedicated to providing the best equipment, instructors, content, and learning environment to its students. 

We invite you to stop by the office and get your hands on the chest of the AmbuSmartman to see how it can improve your CPR skills! 

For more information on the Ambu SmartMan or any of our upcoming education workshops, please contact us at 604-685-4747.

 

PGA of BC Partners with Iridia

Press release from the PGA of BC:

The Professional Golfers’ Association of BC is pleased to establish a new business relationship with Iridia Medical. The PGA of BC and Iridia will be working closely together to create programs and promote safety at golf facilities throughout the province. GMS, a new “Preferred Partner” of the Association, will be offering PGA of BC member facilities “preferred rates” on various products and services related to safety and cardiac care. More details at www.pgabc.org  benefits section.

“Iridia is very pleased to partner with the PGA of BC and its members. We are committed to safety and in particular safety on the golf course and throughout golf course clubhouses. 45,000 Canadians die each year from sudden cardiac arrest, and we at Iridia Medical are working very hard to change that”, says Thomas Puddicombe, Business Operations Director.

PGA of BC Golf cardiac arrest

“We are thrilled about this new partnership with Iridia Medical. We feel that all PGA of BC facilities should be properly prepared with the most up to date safety equipment of their members and guests on a day to day basis. The PGA of BC will promote GMS and encourage member facilities to take advantage of Iridia Medicals’ special offers and promotions throughout the year” says Donald Miyazaki, Executive Director of the PGA of BC.

About the PGA of BC

The Professional Golfers’ Association of British Columbia is an association comprised of more than 650 golf professionals who work at and operate golf courses, driving ranges and other facilities across the province.  Their mandate is to promote and advance the game of golf, serving the needs of both its membership and the golf public through professional and junior golf development programs and high-calibre competitive events. The Zone Office is located in Richmond, BC.  For more information, visit www.pgabc.org.

pga of bc logo

About Iridia Medical

Iridia was founded in 1998 and became an instant pioneer in the implementation of AEDs in British Columbian workplaces.  Through our initial experiences in deploying AEDs, we have expanded into medical education and consulting, becoming one of Canada’s leading companies in the area of health and emergency preparedness.

AEDs, are a core passion for us. Our goal is to see as many AEDs placed in public and private settings as possible in an effort to save more lives.  Iridia has completed over 1,700 AED installations and our client base is drawn from of a cross-section of industries.

How ETCO2 may inform vasopressor use!

Consider the following scenario. While in the emergency department a man suffers a witnessed cardiac arrest, for which he receives prompt high quality CPR, 200 joules defibrillation for an initial rhythm of V-Tach. The defibrillation is followed by a further 2 minute round of high quality CPR during which time an advanced airway with minimal interruptions in chest compressions. ETCO2 monitoring is initiated and shows 12mm/Hg. From this resuscitators can see that patient remains without pulmonary circulation and that the quality of CPR is satisfactory. After the 2 minutes, a quick pause in CPR reveals persistent V-Tach on the monitor. Chest compressions are resumed while the defibrillator is charged, the patient is cleared, 200 joules are delivered chest compressions are immediately resumed.


ECTO2

Let’s now consider two different paths that the ETCO2 scenario can take from here:

  • The defibrillation is unsuccessful, and during the 2 minutes of high quality CPR that follow the ETCO2 hovers around 7 mm/Hg. Seeing this low number, the team changes chest compression providers, and a new clinician is able to get the waveform up to 12mm/Hg. In this case, there is no ETCO2 indication of return of spontaneous circulation, and since there remain no signs of life, CPR is continued and as the code progresses the clinicians consider giving IV epinephrine.
  • Alternatively, the defibrillation is successful, and during the 2 minutes of high quality CPR that follow the ETCO2 jumps to 40mm/Hg. In this case there is ETCO2 indication of return of spontaneous circulation, and the team searches for other signs of life, which may include a pulse. Finding none: high quality CPR is continued however this time the decision is made to withhold the IV epinephrine.

The above scenario illustrates how continuous ETCO2 can not only serve to confirm ongoing placement of advanced airways, but can also be used to inform the quality of CPR, illuminate ROSC and help guide vasopressor use during resuscitation attempts. This being said there still remains no evidence that using epinephrine in this way contributes to neurological intact survival to hospital discharge.

Lastly, this practice of ETCO2 monitoring during resuscitation attempts relies on placement of advanced airways, which have been deemphasized in the ACLS Guidelines since 2005. As such we can see how with increased emphasis on ETCO2, the latest Guidelines may result in an increased use of advanced airways. This unto itself is not necessarily a bad thing, as long as we do not do so to the detriment of our patients. When using advanced airways there is an increase in responsibility to not interrupting chest compressions for too long, and to avoid the hyperventilation of our patients with tidal volumes that are too large and ventilation rates that are too excessive.

Darin Abbey RN
Clinical Nurse Educator
Emergency Department
Nanaimo Regional General Hospital

Shins and Needles – Intra-Osseous Placement

Intra-Osseous Placement

I came across this discussion point while perusing the medical blog world. The discussion revolves around the difficulties with pediatric Intra-Osseous needle placement and more so, keeping the needle in the bone.

Most of my experience with IO insertion and care has been on adults and rarely, actually never, have I witnessed an IO cannula dislodge or come out of an adult limb without the application of brute force. I understand this is not the case for children.

Intraosseous

Intraosseous pediatric trainer

See this link for discussion about how best to secure an IO in pediatric patients. 
http://emcrit.org/misc/how-to-secure-an-io-in-a-peds-patient/

Take home message; if you need to insert an IO, you need to make sure it stays in.

FYI: “cannula” is Latin for little reed

Intra-Osseous in action:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PL3DMY1Zln0]

Breaking the Ice – Orienting Physicians to the Pattison Outpatient Centre

_ _ _ _ _

New to Our Pattison Outpatient Blog Series?

Read the preceding posts:

The Final Chapter

In the final posting in this series outlining our accomplishments at the Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre in Surrey, we will highlight our work in organizing Education, Training and Orientation (ETO) for physicians to this new facility.

Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre

Prior to opening on June 1st 2011, there was a need for over 175 physicians to be educated on the various clinical services and features of the building, trained on existing and new Fraser Health processes and programs and, finally, oriented to the building.  This need resulted in the development of an orientation program designed by physicians for physicians.

Physician Orientation

Through collaborative efforts with a Physician Orientation team at Fraser Health, Iridia assisted in developing the program, communicating with physicians, and conducting both group and individual orientation sessions prior to the opening of the facility. 

The tour of the facility was led by Iridia employees acting as patients with different “appointments” to attend throughout the Centre. Not only did this provide physicians with a thorough induction to the different clinics within the Centre, it also served as a reminder of the “one-stop” function of the facility. Interspersed with the physical orientation of the building were training sessions on the new computer systems and health and safety policies applicable to the Centre, all conducted by Fraser Health staff.

Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre

The most rewarding part of this whole project?  The fact that all of the 175 physicians attended an orientation session and that over 80% of them rated the clarity of the presentations, usefulness of the site tour and the hands-on computer training as “Good” or “Excellent”.

Evidently, orientation and training doesn’t always have to be boring, even when the sessions are lengthy!  By being mindful of physicians’ time and interests, we were able to create a stimulating orientation program which was able to effectively inform and engage physicians. 

November Innovation – The Heart Hero App

At the heart of Iridia, lay one of our eight core values, innovation. As CPR month comes to a close we wanted to highlight one of the most innovative CPR tools out there. It’s called Heart Hero (get it here from the Apple App Store), an interactive mobile app that lets you practice CPR to the catchy beat of the Bee Gees’ hit, Stayin’ Alive.

Heart Hero was created by Genius Factor Games who donated their time and experience to develop this app specifically for the Heart and Stroke Foundation. The goal of this partnership was to create a fun, easy and free tool to learn CPR on the go. Why did they choose Stayin’ Alive? You may have heard that the song’s rhythm provides the perfect pace for performing CPR, and it’s true, the beat hits the nail on the head and is easy to remember in a pinch.

Who should download this app? Heart Hero is for anyone who would like to establish a basic foundation of CPR knowledge. For those who aren’t comfortable with the CPR process, but would like to take a first critical stride, this app is a great start. Heart Hero will walk you through the appropriate steps and give you the tools you need if you find yourself in a situation where you need to perform CPR.

Some of the features include:

  • Video tutorial on the 2011 definition of CPR and using en AED (automatic external defibrillator).
  • Heart & Stroke Foundation office finder (Canada-wide).
  • Important facts about CPR and the Heart & Stroke Foundation.
  • Seven challenging Heart Hero mini-games to test your skills in saving a patient with the basic CPR techniques.
Heart Hero

Heart Hero Screenshot

“It’s clear that cardiopulmonary resuscitation improves the odds of surviving cardiac arrest, but just as importantly, the app provides CPR practitioners with the practice and confidence needed to employ those skills in an emergency situation,” said Lisa Hutcheon, Manager of Patient Programs at the Heart and Stroke Foundation, BC & Yukon.

Unfortunately many individuals hold back from performing CPR because they are afraid they will do it wrong. The truth is, is that not doing anything at all will be the worst case scenario. “The technique is actually less important than doing chest compressions quickly and firmly,” says Hutcheon.

We urge all Canadians to learn CPR, by learning a little bit now you can potentially save a life later. On the quest to bring CPR knowledge to all Canadians, this is a great leap forward. It is innovations such as this that Iridia can stand behind.

*It is important to note, while the app is a valuable tool to practice CPR, it does not replace CPR certification.
*The Heart and Stroke Foundation recommends that all Canadians learn the life-saving skills of CPR and review this knowledge often.

Vancouver Plane Crash – 10/27/2011

First responders such as paramedics, fire rescue and police put their lives on the line everyday when answering emergency calls. Thursday’s plane crash in Vancouver that left many injured was not a typical emergency call for our first responders; or a typical afternoon for those who witnessed the accident.

In case you haven’t heard about the crash or would like to check up-to-date information on the accident, visit the Vanoucver Sun here:
http://www.vancouversun.com/news

Vancouver Plane Crash

Moral obligations of bystanders have been making headlines recently.

http://vancouver.openfile.ca/blog/curator-blog/curated-news/2011/canadian-doctors-bystanders-have-moral-obligation-perform-cpr.

Should strangers rush in to save someone who is in trouble? We would like to think if something terrible happened to us and someone witnessed it, they would come to our aid. But yet, in many cases people are either too stunned or not equipped to deal with an accident. Fortunately yesterday’s plane crash had a silver lining and that lay in the efforts of our first responders and those bystanders who put themselves in harm’s way. As the plane burned up on the road, many people who witnessed the accident rushed to the scene through the smoke and fire to save those who were trapped in the wreckage. Due to their outstanding efforts they were able to retrieve all those who were trapped.

Unfortunately even with the efforts of bystanders and EMS personnel the pilot succumbed to his injuries. Currently the co-pilot is in critical condition, with burns covering up to 80% of his body. We can only hope that he and the others who were injured pull through and recover from this horrific accident.

Had those brave individuals not put their own lives at risk to save others, it is possible many more passengers may have died. This crash highlights the importance of all first responders, whether they are fire rescue, paramedics or police. Those who ran to the burning plane to save those inside now know what it’s like for our first responders who put themselves on the front lines every day.

At Iridia  we have the opportunity to work with fire rescue personnel and paramedics. We understand what they do and why they do it. Accidents like this make us feel grateful that we get the chance to work with those who make it their duty to save lives even if it means putting themselves at risk.

We are very proud to work with those who responded to this accident, as well as all the first responders we work with every day. As a leader in the development of medical education, it is our mission to provide physicians, nurses, and other health care professionals with the most up to date information and skills enabling them to provide their patients with the best possible care.