En Route Care Research Interest Group

Members of TSNRP's En Route Care Research Interest Group are beginning the team's work of advancing ERC with evidence-based practices and research as well as facilitating related ERC research consultations. The RIG has created three subgroups including medical evacuation, aeromedical evacuation patient safety, and en route care pain management.

The Medical Evacuation subgroup, led by Dr. Lori Loan, has been researching the possibility of ketamine protocols to decrease instances of phantom limb pain in amputees (pre-hospital administration, during roles 2 & 3). The group has also discussed the need for further research on personnel needed at the point of injury (RN/medic team vs. paramedics vs. physicians).

The Aeromedical Evacuation-Related Patient Safety subgroup, led by Lt Col Susan Dukes, has begun by focusing on medications, handoffs, and equipment. Members are putting together research proposals including a handoff study (checklist of evidence-based practices that would move with patient) and a study of medication discrepancies and their associated risks. An upcoming survey will query AE nurses and techs about their perceptions of safety culture, patient concerns, and possible solutions. During a recent phone conference, RIG members from Walter Reed expressed interest in solving patient comfort concerns while being transported from Andrews AFB in semi-sized ambulance vehicles on the uneven surfaces of the Washington beltway.

The En Route Care Pain Management subgroup, led by Col Elizabeth Bridges, has found that there are only three studies to date on ERC pain management, but there is now a published clinical practice guideline on pain management with standardized order sets. The group has discussed the need to continue conversation on the nursing-related and multidisciplinary research questions to be asked in this area.

The group would like to congratulate RIG member and co-author MAJ Richard Morton for his recent paper published in December's Critical Care Nurse on the Army's development of tactical trauma transport teams (Critical Care Nurse, 30(6), 57–66).

Anyone interested in joining this group is welcome and encouraged to contact Col Elizabeth Bridges or Lt Col Susan Dukes.