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SAMJ: South African Medical Journal

On-line version ISSN 2078-5135
Print version ISSN 0256-9574


BERRY, M  and  WOOD, D. Simplifying trauma airway management in South African rural hospitals. SAMJ, S. Afr. med. j. [online]. 2014, vol.104, n.9, pp.604-606. ISSN 2078-5135.

South African emergency centres witness high levels of trauma. Successfully managing a compromised trauma airway requires considerable skill and expertise. In the rural healthcare setting, clinics and hospitals are often staffed by junior doctors without formal advanced airway training. Current airway management algorithms tend to ignore lack of resources and skill. We therefore propose a simplified guideline for the rural hospital practitioner. Our algorithm offers a step-by-step approach, with the aim of providing an easy sequence to follow that will ensure successful airway management and patient safety. The paucity of advanced airway equipment in most rural hospitals is taken into consideration.

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