Western Governors University
JNT2 Task 2
Flight nurse’s and Flight Paramedics perform as members of an aeromedical crew on helicopters (rotor wing), and airplanes (fixed wing) aircraft, providing for in-flight management and care for all types and ages of patients. Responsibilities of this job include the planning and preparation of each flight, to include such things as; safety, evaluation of an individual patient's in-flight needs and request of appropriate medications, supplies, and equipment to provide continuing care from origination to the destination facility. They act as liaisons between facilities during an interfacility transport and from scene location to trauma center during medical and trauma related emergencies. They also initiate emergency treatment in the absence of a physician during in-flight medical emergencies. Flight nurses and flight paramedics have training in mechanical ventilation, hemodynamic support, vasoactive medications, airway, and other intensive care skills. Most air medical businesses expect nurses to have at least 2 to 5 years of experience in emergency or critical care units, and the more trauma experience, the better (flightnursetraining.com). This means nurses that have a proven ability to manage multiple patients with vastly different conditions, as well as being able to make split-second decisions about patient care with maximum attention to patient care and safety. Flight paramedics are expected to have a minimum of three years current experience as a paramedic on an advanced life support team and/or critical care transport team. Both of these roles may have to tend to multiple critical cases all at once, so it is important that he or she have the skills to cope with high stress situations. Even though those hired into the role of a flight nurse and flight paramedic come into the role with a core background in critical care and expected level of baseline knowledge, higher level of autonomous critical thinking and rapid decision making is a new skill encountered for many coming into this role. A well-structured training program is an integral part of laying a strong foundation to build the necessary knowledge base needed to assure both a flight nurse and flight paramedic are prepared to perform in their role as a crew chief. Approximately six years ago a well-structured crew chief training program was in place that allowed for consistent and structured learning that allowed all crew member 2 (CM2) to obtain the necessary skills and knowledge expected to hold a position of crew chief. These modules covered areas of navigation, communications, safety, aviation, critical thinking; and incorporated reading material, practical exercises, quizzes and tests which the CM2 worked through in a systematic process. At the completion of the training module; the crew member then went through a question answer board (QAB) process. In the QAB, the crew member was asked a series of questions by a board consisting of a crew chief, clinical manager, pilot, medical director and given multiple scenarios. If the QAB was completed successfully the CM2 then advanced to status of a crew chief. Current State of Problem
Currently a structured training program that assures all flight nurses and flight paramedics obtain this baseline level of knowledge that is expected of those in the crew chief role does not exist. The current practice is the assumption that all CM2’s obtain the skills and knowledge necessary by reaching their seventy fifth patient transport. This training plan does not allow for the structured delivery of expected skills and knowledge nor does it allow for a baseline competency to be demonstrated before being promoted from CM2 to crew chief. The current process was put into place to meet the increased demand for staffing experience by the company during...
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