Originally Posted by Paseo Del Norte
How do we define people who do not intubate, but still manage airways? For example; nurses, respiratory therapists and EMT's may manage airways and use a variety of techniques that do not include intubation. Also, some of these providers may be involved in airway assessments, assisting with intubation and even recognising failed airway situations and using less invasive strategies to manage the airway.
Anecdotally, I find many problems exist when it comes to providers managing airways using bag mask techniques, adjuncts and other techniques. I almost think some method of assessing non-invasive management ability should exist? My mantra in intubation situations is that the only thing the intubator should worry about is intubating. People in my shoes should create an environment where this occurs. So, I wonder what your thoughts are on these other providers and if you have any methods of assessing and/or classifying their abilities?
I thought I knew how to bag as an EMT, but it was only until Paramedic school where I had an excellent CRNA preceptor did I really learn. He would make me bag each of my patients for a period of 5 minutes before intubating in the OR, that was an invaluable experience. I really think the art of the BVM is under-appreciated and while I like the above categories I do think to some extent (as much as I dislike trying to categorizing every single skillset) you have a point, BLS and alternative airways should be critiqued and evaluated. Just because its BLS does not mean it is not without problems and does not require skill.