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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Challenges in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest-a study combining closed-circuit television (CCTV) and medical emergency calls

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The aim of this study was to explore challenges in recognition and initial treatment of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) by using closed-circuit television (CCTV) recordings combined with audio recordings from emergency medical calls.

METHOD: All OHCA captured by CCTV in the Capital Region of Denmark, 15 June 2013-14 June 2014, were included. Using a qualitative approach based on thematic analysis, we focused on the interval from the victim's collapse to the arrival of the ambulance.

RESULTS: Based on the 21 CCTV recordings collected, the main challenges in OHCA seemed to be situation awareness, communication and attitude/approach. Situation awareness among bystanders and the emergency medical dispatchers (dispatcher) differed. CCTV showed that bystanders other than the caller, were often physically closer to the victim and initiated cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Hence, information from the dispatcher had to pass through the caller to the other bystanders. Many bystanders passed by or left, leaving the resuscitation to only a few. In addition, we observed that the callers did not delegate tasks that could have been performed more effectively by other bystanders, for example, receiving the ambulance or retrieving an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).

CONCLUSION: CCTV combined with audio recordings from emergency calls can provide unique insights into the challenges of recognition and initial treatment of OHCA and can improve understanding of the situation. The main barriers to effective intervention were situation awareness, communication and attitude/approach. Potentially, some of these challenges could be minimized if the dispatcher was able to see the victim and the bystanders at the scene. A team approach, with the dispatcher responsible for the role as team leader of a remote resuscitation team of a caller and bystanders, may potentially improve treatment of OHCA.

Original languageEnglish
JournalResuscitation
Volume96
Pages (from-to)317-322
ISSN0300-9572
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2015

ID: 45436207