critical care courseAn intensive two-week course on critical care will be hosted by the Department of Emergency Medicine at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) Medical School.

The Emergency Medicine Critical Care Transport Provider Course will be held from May 28 to June 11, 2015. The registration deadline is May 1, 2015. The course, developed by the University of Maryland, is designed for paramedics and other health care providers who are interested in learning intensive care unit skills required in transporting critical care patients.

The course director is Dr. Keith Gates, assistant professor of emergency medicine, and the site director is Chivas Guillote, BSN, a paramedic who is also a cardiovascular intensive care nurse at Memorial Hermann Heart & Vascular Institute-Texas Medical Center. Faculty from across UTHealth and the Texas Medical Center will lead classes in multiple disciplines.

Students learn the skills necessary to keep critical care patients stable during transfer from one medical institution to another, including managing ventilators, administering blood transfusions, treating sepsis and burns, and managing high-risk pregnancies. In the cadaver lab they learn how to insert intraosseous IV access into bone marrow when blood veins have collapsed and the proper way to perform a needle decompression and finger thoracotomy to let air out of the chest in cases of tension pneumothorax, as well as surgical emergency airways.

“The basic education for a paramedic encompasses managing the first 30 to 60 minutes of a medical emergency, for example, immediate care of trauma, heart attack or stroke. It doesn’t prepare you for after a patient gets to the hospital, so you’re not trained to manage advanced parameters established in the hospital,” said Guillote, who is a graduate of the UTHealth School of Nursing. “Originally this course was geared toward paramedic providers. Today the course welcomes other disciplines in the health care team interested in critical care transport. The graduates of this course are highly sought-after commodities because employers who hire our students do not have to spend as much time providing them additional training.”

See CCEMTP Critical Care Transport for more information.

-Deborah Mann Lake, Office of Public Affairs