Tuesday, November 02, 2004

ATLS Follies....
Last Thursday and Friday I engaged in my semi-annual self-flagellation as course director for the Advanced Trauma Life Support provider class. The class was made up of some local physicians seeking CME, some physicians that work in small community ED's that are in Big Hospital's referral area, and many of the residents in the family practice program in town.
The residents really irked me. I had discussed at length with their chief residents that the residents needed to be released from all clinical duties during the class. I still had residents showing up late and coming and going during the course to do god only knows what.
It got off to an inauspicious start with the course co-ordinator and I not connecting about who was available to teach until last Monday. I then had to go hat in hand to my partners (who had already scheduled elective cases) to get them to teach.
The ATLS course has a "surgical skills practicum" where the student performs certain procedures discussed in the course. These include chest tubes, pericardiocentesis, crichothyroidotomy, and diagnostic peritoneal lavage. In the past we have used goats for the surgical lab, but our goat supplier went out of business. We were able to quickly obtain the Trauma Man. IMHO it is an excellent device and much simpler and cleaner than the goats.
And to put the icing on the cake, one of the instructors that was going to lecture and test during Friday's session no-showed. This left me to give his lectures and to initially test with only three instructors. Another one had to leave at 5:30. So me and another instructor tested until 8:00.
Every once and awhile I will get an itch to put on another course but days like that quickly dissuade me.
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