Traveling Emergency Action Plan

July 13, 2014

One aspect of the athletic trainers’ job is to manage emergency situations on the field. We preach having an emergency action plan and knowing who is going to do what when that unfortunate emergency does happen. But for teams, coaches, and the medical professionals, it is important that we not only consider the EAP for our home games. What about when we go on the road? Think about this for a second.. many cases at the high school level varsity football is the one sport the athletic trainers tend to travel with. Varsity football plays a relatively even schedule of 5 home games and 4 away games or vice versa (in Illinois). That means that for half of the varsity football games that I cover, I’m traveling for. That means I won’t have the same EMS crew each week. That means I won’t be able to pull out whatever equipment I feel is necessary. And I can’t just run back into the athletic training room to get it. atc_simulation_football_spineboard So we need to consider what our Emergency Action Plan on the road is. What equipment do we have? What medical providers are there? What is the procedure if a kid is injured and requires transport to the hospital? All of these must be considered and put into our plan. Also, make sure that we communicate with the host school to find out what they are providing for us. Personally, I prefer to take all of my emergency equipment with me each week and rely on the host for as little as possible. That means that I do things nearly identical each week regardless home or away. That also means that I don’t have to rely on them for something and there be the possibility of failure.   My travel list for Varsity Football

  • Athletic Training Kit
  • Crutch Bag with two pairs of crutches
  • Emergency Equipment Duffle Bag
  • o   SAM Splints
  • o   AED
  • o   Arm Sling
  • o   CPR Mask
  • o   Cordless drill
  • o   Face mask remover
  • o   Bag Valve Mask
  • o   Cervical Collar
  • o   Rectal Thermometer
  • o   Knee Immobilizer
  • Vacuum Splints bag
  • Ice chest
  • Cooler for Cold Towels

This also brings up another important reason why the NATA’s recommendation for a “Time Out” for healthcare providers prior to the game is so important. Make sure you know who the medical providers are on the other side of the field and make sure you know what the procedures are for getting EMS onto the field. You can check out that document here.   Other thoughts? Let me know!

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