FAQ Level 3 Award for First Responders on Scene: Emergency First Responder (RQF) FROS® - Online Blended Part 1

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Prioritising first aid

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First Aid for Multiple Injuries: Prioritising and Managing Trauma

Understanding Multiple Injuries in First Aid

During a standard first aid course, you typically learn to manage a single injury, such as a cut or amputation. However, in advanced courses, you might encounter scenarios involving multiple injuries, similar to those seen on trauma mannequins. It's crucial to know how to prioritise and address each injury effectively.

Key Focus: Blood Loss Management

**Maintaining breathing** is essential, but for this discussion, we'll assume breathing is not an issue. The primary concern is **blood loss**. You need to evaluate and decide how to treat each injury based on severity and the amount of blood loss.

  • **Amputations**: These can cause significant blood loss and should be addressed first. Applying tourniquets and hemostatic dressings is crucial.
  • **Severe Leg Injuries**: If a leg injury is severe, it may also require a tourniquet and dressing.
  • **Burns**: Although serious, burns may not be immediately life-threatening and can be prioritised lower.

Dealing with Multiple Risks

In addition to blood loss, there are other risks to consider, such as infection. Managing a trauma scenario can be daunting, but remember, **your training will guide you**. In high-stress situations like bomb blasts or terrorist attacks, your training will help you react effectively.

Prioritising and Stabilising the Patient

The key is to quickly assess which injuries are the most life-threatening and address them accordingly. For example:

  • Apply tourniquets swiftly to control bleeding from severe leg injuries.
  • Use trauma dressings for serious cuts that are not bleeding heavily.
  • Stabilise knife wounds to prevent further injury.

Managing Major Incidents

In a major incident, you might encounter multiple patients with various injuries. Effective triage and prioritisation are crucial. Engage bystanders to assist where possible, as emergency services might take time to arrive.

Building Competence through Training

The more you understand each injury type, the more confident you will be in handling them. Explore our other videos to learn about treating burns, open fractures, knife injuries, amputations, and bullet wounds. Remember, you may often deal with casualties with multiple injuries.