Paramedics Course – Scoop Stretchers

Scoop Stretchers

Micro-lecture by the Australian Paramedical College

In today’s micro-lecture, Australian Paramedical College Hon. Snr. Lecturer Sam Willis talks about scoop stretchers.

Scoop Stretchers

Welcome to this micro-lecture on scoop stretchers.

Now, as a paramedic, at some point in your career, you are going to need to be able to log roll your patient, get them off the ground or out of the situation that they are in, and into the back of an ambulance so they could be conveyed to hospital for further treatment and assessment. Now, the good news is, is that there is something called a NEXUS criteria, which is a five-point criteria scale that allows you, as a paramedic, to determine if this is even necessary in the first place.

What we are talking about here is an area that is highly controversial right now. There’s a growing body of evidence that says that we shouldn’t be placing our patients onto any solid, hard surface for prolonged periods of time, and especially not strapping them down and keeping them there because what you end up with is tissue damage caused by pressure sores due to a lack of circulation going into that tissue.

When you are choosing to log roll somebody onto a piece of equipment, such as the rescue board, the Combi Carrier, which is this one here, or any other type of solid piece of equipment, you have to use careful and clinical decision-making because it’s not always in the patient’s best interest. However, we have to understand that if a patient is presenting with signs and symptoms of a spinal injury, which could potentially injure their spinal cord, we need to actually immobilise them and it’s really, really important. The C-spine is always more important than any other part of the body.

How do we do it, then? We need to generally log roll our patient. But, once we’ve log-rolled our patient, we’re basically tipping our patient to a 15-degree angle and placing a piece of equipment underneath them. Now, more and more ambulance services are starting to use this Combi Carrier or a version of Combi Carrier. In other words, a piece of equipment that separates in half. You then log roll your patient, place one half under your patient, log roll them back, and then do the same on the other side.

Now, these pieces of equipment are great for getting patients out of tricky situations, as well as just simply lifting them off the floor. You can use them to extricate patients because you can strap patients onto it. Let’s zoom in on this one here. Notice how you’ve got this solid plastic, which is great for putting patients onto a hard surface when you need to get them out of different situations. You’ve also got these yellow bars that allow you to strap your patient onto the Combi Carriers.

If we were just to go back a second, notice how these boards come apart and they are really, really simple. In this image here, you can see the clip. What this person is doing is just pulling the clip back to allow this top part of the board to be released. When you’re pushing them in, they really just do click in dead simply.

Now, there are other types of stretcher that look like this and act in the same manner, including the scoop stretcher. If you just type in scoop stretcher, you can see all the different types. All they are designed to do is scoop your patient up. As you can see all of these different types of stretcher. They separate and they go under each side of your patient and then you can click them in. So they work in exactly the same way.

Some materials are better than the other. For example, these aluminium ones here, they’re very good at lowering and raising your patient’s body temperature, which is something you don’t want.

I hope you enjoyed the micro-lecture on scoop stretchers.

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