It is not uncommon for Healthcare professionals, especially those living in remote and rural areas, to have to attend to prehospital emergencies.
These emergencies can present as high-pressure situations and responders may have to deal with situations or environments that they may not have come across before. They may also be tasked to respond individually or may be part of a team of others that are unfamiliar to them. The scene of an incident also has the potential to change quickly requiring keen situational awareness skills. These stresses can all affect ability to perform under pressure.
Stephen Hearns – Peak Performance Under Pressure
Dr Stephen Hearns chats to us about the critical importance of how we perform when the pressure is on; he draws on his huge experience in Pre-Hospital medicine to show that staying at the peak of performance at a job is a trait that can be learnt and improves outcomes for the team and patient. He shares practical hints and tips on preparation, communications, controlling your stress and regaining your composure when the frazzle hits.
Key points from this podcast:
3 key points to improve performance under pressure-
Drilling through turning predictable tasks into automatic actions and freeing up cognitive ’space’ for decision making
Using cognitive aids (checklists, guidelines)
Using ‘rally points’ to share and update your mental model
Stephen is a consultant in emergency and aeromedical retrieval medicine. He works with Scotland’s Emergency Medical Retrieval Service (EMRS). This aeromedical retrieval service delivers pre-hospital critical care for major trauma patients, rural hospital secondary retrievals and major incident responses. Inspired by experience gained working on London’s air ambulance and in Queensland Australia, Stephen led the establishment of this team from a small voluntary service in 2004 to what is now a fully government funded aeromedical retrieval organisation with an international reputation. Stephen has published a number of papers and book chapters relating to emergency medicine and pre-hospital care.