Sunday, 29 January 2012

New equipment

We live on a ship, a hospital ship.  It's a unique environment that results in unique challenges.  Fire drills are a normal part of life and practiced regularly, involving all of the crew.  One concession made is that we generally don't take our patients off of the ship for this, but the possibility always exists that it will one day be necessary, so there are plans for that too.  
Being a volunteer organization, we receive a large amount of donated goods, some of it being things that none of us has used before.  We recently decided to try out some flexible evacuation sleds that were intended for hospital use.  The wonderful thing about them is they roll up tight and don't take up tons of space.  But none of us had ever used one before.  (Hard stretchers, yes.  Flexible ones provided a bit more of a challenge!) With the help of volunteer "patients", the sled/stretcher got a workout (actually, I think the stretcher bearers got the workout!!!) going up and down one flight of stairs, trying to determine the easiest, safest way to use it.  

Using three people to carry it works, but the stairwells are tight and the stretcher bends quite a bit.

Another way to get it up was one person at the feet and one pulling the provided rope at the head. 

 Attempting to pull it up with the rope provided taught us that it was really made to help LOWER people down stairwells.  It was really smooth and easy to use for lowering down the stairwell.  Because, in most hospitals, you evacuate by going down.  Here we need to evacuate by going up... then down.  
More practice is planned.  As you can see by the smiles, we all had a lot of laughter and fun with trying out the new equipment.  


Lycia said...

Heather that's flippin' hilarious. And i'm not sure how safe i'd feel with Maaike haulin' me up the stairs! Looks like tons of fun. Miss you girls!

Cami Hood said...

It’s good that you took the time to familiarize yourselves with the different new equipments that arrived. It would be amiss if you only handled it for the first time on the actual event that you have an emergency. It pays to be prepared, and with medical equipment and gear, proper use can save lives.

Cami Hood