“I attended Rotto Ramble for the challenge and definitely recommend it to other junior doctors and med students. It’s a chance to put your skills to the test and a fun way to use your medical knowledge.” – Rotto Ramble participant.
Doctors in race to save ‘lives’ at Rottnest
The beaches and tourist hotspots on Rottnest Island were the backdrop for a series of medical emergencies over the weekend including a near drowning, a snake bite, a stroke and a potential spinal injury.
Fortunately, they were only simulated emergencies and 30 junior doctors and medical students were on hand
to ensure the ‘casualties’ received the best treatment possible.
For the first time, Rural Health West hosted Rotto Ramble, an ‘Amazing Race’ style medical wilderness challenge on Rottnest Island to help tomorrow’s doctors think ‘outside the square’ when faced with emergency situations in non-hospital settings. The unique two-day event saw six teams of junior doctors and medical students performing a range of simulated emergency scenarios around the island as they raced to the finish. Participants did not know what medical emergency was coming, or when, but they had to be ready to swing into action, work as a team and save ‘lives’.
Rotto Ramble creator and emergency medicine specialist Professor Tony Celenza, said the uniqueness of the wilderness event enabled junior doctors and medical students to utilise a wide range of skills. Professor Celenza works at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital and The University of Western Australia.
“The doctors and medical students responded to medical emergencies that happened without warning at various locations on the island, which for many was out of their comfort zone,” Professor Celenza said.
“They’re used to having access to medical equipment and monitors in a hospital setting. In these wilderness scenarios they had to improvise and think laterally under pressure as well as work effectively as a team.”
The event gave junior doctors and medical students the opportunity to become team leaders and develop their emergency medicine and communication skills, whilst working under the supervision of highly experienced practitioners who have worked in rural and remote regions and have expertise in wilderness medicine training.
Continue reading the full media release >>
Program & Speakers
This practical and unique event featured:
- relevant learning and educational upskilling;
- a strong focus on implementation and participation. Many of the skills and knowledge gained during the event will be applicable to dealing with particular emergencies that occur in rural settings;
- a competitive camaraderie element as participants work together to manage the staged emergencies and address the issues they may be faced with as a junior health professional;
- the development of skills and professional abilities such as teamwork, leadership and dealing with stress and uncertainty; and
- the opportunity to build networks and friendships with other participants, colleagues and specialists.
By the end of this event, participants should:
For each scenario, specific management of the clinical condition should be addressed as well as all of these generic points:
- be able to assess and prioritise patients and injuries according to medical urgency using a structured approach;
- be able to manage emergency problems in a wilderness environment and generalise this to patients in other clinical situations;
- understand the specific problems and limitations of practising medicine in a wilderness setting including transportation and evacuation needs;
- understand working in a team and the importance of effective communication and leadership to optimise outcomes and reduce medical error;
- be able to deal with stress and uncertainty that occurs in unfamiliar environments; and
- appreciate the impact medical comorbidities may have in a wilderness environment.
- Scene safety and management of the environment
- Leadership, teamwork and communication
- Recognition of initial need for resuscitation and managing immediate life threats
- Appropriate supportive and specific therapy
- Care of basic needs of patient and group
- Extrication, stabilisation and transport planning