Chris Sajnog and his review on LAPG

Is the Scene Safe? SMART Emergency Medicine Guide

Hey guys what’s going on retired Navy Seal, Chris Sajnog here. In this post, I’m going to cover the first step in providing smart emergency medicine, making sure is the scene safe

So I came up with Smart Emergency Medicine, which stands for scene safe, massive bleeding, airway, reassess, and then transport. Smart is a simple effective system to respond to any emergency medical situation before medical personnel arrives, or the victim can be brought to a hospital.

If you haven’t read the overview post, make sure you read that before you continue. So you can see how all these pieces fit together to provide a framework for protecting yourself and those you love or even those you just don’t want to bleed to death.

Is the Scene Safe?

Now the first thing is, is the scene safe? If you come up to an emergency medical situation, you may or may not know what happened to cause the injuries, but you obviously don’t want yourself or those around you to become casualties as well.

So you need to make sure you check to make sure the scene is safe, especially in a gunfight or other shooting situation. We have a saying in the SEAL teams: “The best medicine is fire superiority.”

A child in a car crash scene

Sometimes the best medicine that you can give is to stop the person who’s putting holes in you or the ones you love. So you may need to return fire or get to a safe place before you can even start treating the patient.

Whatever the situation, if you didn’t see it happen. Take the time to look around and see what might have caused the injuries. Also, look around for other people that might be injured.

Look and listen for:

  • Gunfire
  • Downed power lines
  • Fallen items like ladders or rocks

Look for anything that can hurt you or those around you before you can help the patient.

How to Handle Emergency Situation

Now, let’s talk about how to handle emergency situations? So just remember now when you show up at the scene with your first aid kit that you’ve practiced using all the supplies in it, you still need to make sure that the scene is safe.

One thing that I learned in 30 years as a combat medic, in any emergency situation, assume that those around you don’t know what to do, and assume that they will freeze. I’ve seen it too many times to count.

It’s your job to take control. Tell someone around you to call 911 or go get help. Don’t make a general request to the group. Make eye contact with somebody and see if there’s anyone awake inside and tell them exactly what to do.

Ex: “You, in a blue shirt. Go call 911” – and make sure that they acknowledge you.

Alright, also make sure you practice the lesson that you just learned. In this case, it’s situational awareness. Do walkthroughs with your family and friends because just reading this post won’t save anyone’s life.

In the next post, I’ll be teaching you the M in smart medicine, massive bleeding. Now here’s a hint, it would be a good idea to have the medical supplies I’m going to be talking about in hand to practice along with me. Keep paving your path to perfection, and do not forget to ask yourself in any emergency situation, Is the scene safe?

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