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Retention of Wilderness Medicine Knowledge & Skills. By: Kent Clement, Ph.D. Nadia Kimmel, M.S. Consider This Scenario. SCENARIO.

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retention of wilderness medicine knowledge skills

Retention of Wilderness Medicine Knowledge & Skills

By: Kent Clement, Ph.D. Nadia Kimmel, M.S.

scenario
SCENARIO

You and your friends are hiking on a mountain trail in mid-August. You are enjoying a beautiful sunny afternoon with a temperature of 72 F. You come across a person sitting on the trail holding his/her right arm. This person is alone and there are no bystanders. You are 5 miles from the nearest trailhead where your vehicle is parked. It is ten miles from the trailhead to the nearest town. There is no cell reception until you reach the town limits.

Based on your WFR knowledge and skills what are some of the things that you should do?

scene size up initial assessment
SCENE SIZE – UP & INITIAL ASSESSMENT

After determining that the scene is safe, you find out the person’s name but he/she does no know what happened. The person is confused and exhibits a slurred speech. They complain of pain while guarding their right arm. No sign of life threatening trauma is apparent.

WHAT NEXT?

scenario1
SCENARIO

After asking SAMPLE and taking vitals you find out the following:

S: Pain in the right arm, pale, confused, slurred speech.

A: None

M: None

P: Diabetes (Type II)

L: Not sure

E: Does not recall

HR: 132

RR: 30

BP: Strong radial pulse

LOC: A & 0 X 1 (Alert & oriented to person only)

SCTM: Pale, warm & dry

CSM: Weak in all four extremities, can feel, does not respond to commands well but has good pulses

PERRL: Normal

WHAT NEXT?

scenario treatments
SCENARIO TREATMENTS
  • Glucose administration while protecting the airway.
  • Splint the arm and check CSM before and after.
  • Head-to-toe exam (reveals nothing)
  • Clear the spine while meeting all criteria
  • Formulate an evacuation plan
average score 44
Average Score44%

INCOMPLETE SAMPLE

INCOMPLETE VITALS

NO GLUCOSE ADMINISTRATION

POOR AIRWAY MANGMENT

10/23

participants demographics
Participants’ Demographics
  • 34 total
  • F-9, M-25
  • Age Range
  • Highest WEM Certification – WFR-33, WEMT-1
study limitations
Study Limitations
  • Not generalizable as it stands due to a small sample size
  • Not randomized design – opportunity sampling
  • Preliminary study – You can get involved with this research – details to follow…
more demographics
More Demographics
  • First Obtained WEM Certification in years ago:
  • Number of Recertification Courses:
still more demographics
Still More Demographics
  • The Type of Work They Currently Pursue:
    • Guides – 19
    • Therapy – 1
    • Outward Bound – 9
    • Outdoor Education – 2
    • Volunteer Organization – 1
    • Conservation – 1
    • Field Biologist – 1
  • Why did you get an WEM Cert. in the 1st place?
    • Required by job – 29, SAR – 1, Required in School - 3
results
Results
  • Before the scenario, participants were asked to estimate the percentage of knowledge required to be fully-qualified as a WEM provider they have retained. Answer average: 65%, Range: 17.5 to 90.
  • Before the scenario, participants were asked to estimate the percentage of skill required to be fully-qualified as a WEM provider they have retained. Answer average: 68%, Range: 20 to 90.
  • Remember, accuracy was 44%
more results
More Results
  • After the scenario, participants were asked if they retained as much knowledge required to be fully-qualified as a WEM provider as they thought they would. Answer: Yes – 7, No – 27
  • After the scenario, participants were asked if they retained as much skill required to be fully-qualified as a WEM provider as they thought they would. Answer: Yes – 18, No - 16
injuries with which participants dealt
Injuries With Which Participants Dealt:
  • ligament sprain 12
  • Laceration 22
  • muscle sprain 13
  • Sunburn 29
  • Frostbite 5
  • tooth related 5
  • Fracture 9
  • Burn 14
  • Dislocation 5
  • blister(s) 25
  • immersion foot 6
  • bruise, contusion 18
  • Tendonitis 6
  • head injury without loss of consciousness 10
  • head injury with loss of consciousness 1
  • eye injury 5
  • skin abrasions 25
injuries with which participants dealt1
Injuries With Which Participants Dealt:
  • near drowning 3
  • shoulder dislocation 7
  • life threatening bleed 0
  • back injury 5
  • “Other” includes: fish hook, fractured pelvis, sickle cell disease, ruptured spleen, compound fracture, snake bite.
illnesses with which participants dealt
Illnesses With Which Participants Dealt:
  • allergic reaction 17
  • Anaphylaxis 2
  • Diarrhea 20
  • AMS 12
  • food related illness 9
  • HAPE 0
  • HACE 0
  • non-spec. fever illness 4
  • urinary tract infection 4
  • skin infection 10
  • heat cramps 2
  • heat exhaustion 15
  • heat stroke 1
  • chest pain or cardiac cond. 2
  • eye infection 2
  • upper respiratory illness 2
illnesses with which participants dealt1
Illnesses With Which Participants Dealt:
  • abdominal or other gastrointestinal problem without diarrhea 12
  • hypothermia illness 6
  • heat illness 7
  • cardiac emergencies 0
  • diabetic emergencies 3
  • Seizures 3
  • Asthma 6
  • behavioral emerg. 8
  • Hyponatremia 3
  • dehydration 21
  • snake bites 1
  • spider bites 6
  • scorpions stings 3
  • bee stings 13
  • red/fire ant stings 5
  • animal bites 1
  • gender spec. issues 4
illnesses with which participants dealt2
Illnesses With Which Participants Dealt:
  • toleo (foot rot specific to the Grand Canyon) 3
  • ear infection 0
  • Cpr 2
  • rescue breathing 1
  • Other 0
ideas for improving retention
Ideas for Improving Retention
  • Limit rescuer distraction
  • Simplify wilderness medicine curricula
  • Emphasize SAMPLE and information gathering skills in wilderness medicine classes
  • Offer continuing education classes on-line as part of the recertification process
  • Look at other medical industry standards for recertification requirements and lengths
  • CPR
  • NREMT
  • ACLS
  • OEC
more ideas for improving retention
More Ideas for Improving Retention
  • Recalibrate rescuer overconfidence
  • Design curriculum giving precedence to the activities with which rescuers are most likely to face in an emergency situation.
  • Shorten the re-certification period. (I know, I know)
slide22

The End

  • Getting involved with the study:
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