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Paediatric cardiac arrest

Picking up the pieces

2 cases of an unsuccessful paediatric cardiac arrest

You may not realise but managing paediatric arrest is stressful and can cause long term anxiety and depression for medical staff, especially with their own children

Hot & Cold debriefs are very important

Hot Debrief

  1. Gather all your team of doctors and nurses as soon as possible after an unsuccessful resuscitation.

  2. Let everyone speak their mind one by one (most important step)

  3. Ask if anything could have been done differently that could have helped

  4. Listen to all the points raised

  5. If any confronting or conflicting opinion raised make sure you investigate them with an appropriately level incident notification system practiced in your hospital

  6. Thank every one and offer help and counselling through hospital social work services

Cold Debrief

  1. Can often be in form of Morbidity and Mortality meeting or Email communication after an incident notification system

  2. Idea is also to incorporate people not part of the resuscitation to have learning from a serious case which otherwise is very rare

  3. Agree on points amongst the concerned people, to be investigated further

  4. External enquiries may need to be planned (Coroners, Police, social worker and child wellbeing units)

  5. Ensure all staff are feeling alright, if not offer counselling, even better to have someone from counselling service to be present at the cold debrief meeting for confidential and discreet intake

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