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First Aid

  • By: David E. Alexander
  • In: Encyclopedia of Disaster Relief
  • Edited by: K. Bradley Penuel & Matt Statler
  • Subject:Public Health (general), Public Policy (general)

Until recently, medical response to major incidents and disasters was based on the principle of “scoop and run,” by which injured victims were taken as quickly as possible to a hospital before being given treatment. This reflected lack of skill and capacity to treat the injured in the field, and it often caused the patient's condition to worsen. Now, there is an increasing tendency to bring medical treatment to the patient, rather than the opposite, so that the patient's condition is stabilized immediately upon rescue, or sometimes even before the person is extricated. This is a consequence of the professionalization of rescue processes in all fields, and has led to the application of increasingly more sophisticated techniques, protocols, and equipment in order to care for ...

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