This evening, the Skerries Coast Guard team took part in oxygen awareness training. This interactive session centred on the use of oxygen in pre-hospital medical and trauma emergencies. Oxygen is one of the most commonly used medications in the pre-hospital emergency care environment.
The training session included an explanation of the different types of oxygen cylinders available and the important safety considerations with their use. The team took part in a practical instruction in the use of the common white CD portable oxygen cylinder, which holds up to 460L of compressed oxygen.
The brief also covered the range of oxygen delivery devices used in the pre-hospital emergency care environment, including; non rebreather mask, venturi mask, nebuliser mask, nasal cannula, and the bag valve mask (BVM). The appropriate flow rates for each mask was also discussed along with the resulting oxygen % delivery.
The team explored the vast range of pre-hospital emergency scenarios where oxygen is used and the special considerations required for COPD (Chronic Obstruction Pulmonary Disease) casualties. The team also received a practical demonstration on the typical oxygen saturation (SpO2) measuring devices used in pre-hospital care, and their associated limitations.
Overall, the evening proved extremely informative and emphasised the importance of awareness of the use of this vital component of pre-hospital emergency care management.