The "pit crew" concept in cardiac arrest

While the drivers and owners may get most of the credit a good "pit crew" is essential for team success in NASCAR.

 

 

So what makes a good pit crew?

Leadership

A good pit manager will ensure that the pit crew is ready and that all the necessary resources are in place. That includes ensuring that the appropriate number of people have been assigned to critical tasks, and that equipment is organized in a logical manner.

Skills and Competencies

Individual team members should possess all of the skills and competencies to perform their functions quickly, efficiently, and accurately. For example, the tire replacement crew should know when the tires need to be replaced, where the tires are kept, and whether wet or dry tires are required. Similar skills are required of the team members responsible for refueling and repairing mechanical breakdowns.

Teamwork and Communication

Fluency in communication can make the difference between winning and losing. This is where precious seconds can be lost or gained. Good communication is what leads to coordination and problem solving. Lack of communication leads to errors and loss of situational awareness.

Best Practices

Doing something because "that's the way it's always been done" or because "that's how a real pit crew operates" is short-sighted if the end result is losing the race. A good pit crew learns from its mistakes (and the mistakes of others) and will not hesitate to amend its procedures when another pit crew demonstrates a way to do it better. The outcome drives the process. Not tradition. Not ego.

Rehearsal

A good pit crew doesn't "make it up the day of the race" and neither does any other high-performance team (Navy SEALs, surgical team at Johns Hopkins, NFL football team). It takes practice. Lots of practice. It also takes a commitment to excellence which is the motivation. It has to start with the desire to win and be the best.

Applying these lessons

Firefighters with Hilton Head Island Fire & Rescue discuss
the "lessons learned" from a recent cardaic arrest.

Are you familiar with the latest evidence based guidelines for the care of cardiac arrest patients?

Have you bothered to find out how the top EMS systems in the country are doing it?

When's the last time you practiced working a cardiac arrest with a fully clothed 175 pound mannequin found face-down between a toilet and a bathtub?

When's the last time you practiced using your own real equipment (as opposed to the equipment laid out on the table at your last ACLS class)?

When's the last time you sat down with your crew and choreographed exactly who would do what during a cardiac arrest?

Are you like a "pit crew" when you arrive on scene? Or do you "do the best you can" and hope for the best?

Who would you want showing up to save a member of your family?

Photo credit: Wake County EMS blog

See also:

Why you need to strengthen your community's chain-of-survival

Tom Bouthillet and Jamie Davis discuss cardiac arrest and the chain-of-survival

Cardiac arrest – Anatomy of a System Failure

Cardiac arrest – Are you ready to save one of our own?

65 year old male CC: Cardiac arrest on the tennis court

57 year old male CC: Cardiac arrest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

EMS 12-Lead

Cardiac Rhythm Analysis, 12-Lead ECG Interpretation, Resuscitation

JEMS Talk: Google Hangout

Comments
Proficiency vs Deficiency… The Art Of Electrocardiography | EMS 12 Lead
Understanding Amiodarone
[…] on the highlighted title for an Amiodarone breakdown,¬†UNDERSTANDING AMIODARONE¬† ¬†One tool I use in these cases of bradycardia, is SPo2 monitoring. Remember, with every systole […]
2015-05-22 16:59:43
Wayne
12 Lead ECG – Lead Placement Diagrams
I have been doing EKG's for the past thirty years. It use to be that you always lay the patient in the supine position but here lately I have been told that with the patient sitting up right will not change the EKG, is this so ?
2015-05-21 17:37:37
Ivan Rios
Understanding Atropine
Hi Tony, thank you for writing. It's always a bit of a gamble to give opinion in such topics without being there, however, addressing ventilation is a must. The rate could be secondary to vagal stimulation and/or respiratory depression, but it sounds like the patient is compensating pretty well when it comes to the hemodynamic…
2015-05-21 12:55:43
Tony Correia
Understanding Atropine
Looking for an opinion. Had a pt. who was unconscious from unknown etiology, Agonal respiration = 6, SPO2 = 59, heart rate =37 sinus bradycardia, B/P = 137/80 . We ventilate the pt. approx for 2 minutes without change in status. Would you have administered atropine or continue with BVM to attempt to correct hypoxia,…
2015-05-21 12:16:26
dan
57 year old male: Chest Discomfort
I'm sorry but I don't see any flutter here. With a rate of 150 we are at the very upper limit of sinus tach. No O2 is indicated with a pulse ox of 94%, especially if you are thinking cardiac. Place in position of comfort, large bore IV, fluid bolus, ASA, nitro, capnography, complete assessment…
2015-05-14 03:50:36

ECG Medical Training

12-Lead ECG Challenge Smartphone App

Photobucket

12-Lead ECG Challenge Smartphone App - $5.99

  • Apple iOS
  • Android
  • Amazon
  • Web Based

  • FRN-TV video review
  • iMedicalApps.com review
  • Interested in resuscitation?

    FireEMS Blogs eNewsletter

    Sign-up to receive our free monthly eNewsletter

    Visitor Map / Stats

    Locations of visitors to this page


    LATEST EMS NEWS

    HOT FORUM DISCUSSIONS