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Jim Squire

Why is O2 required in this case?

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I'm learning to become an EMT, so be easy on me for asking this newbie question, but it points to something about O2 adminstration that I don't understand.

Virginia's health department posts a bunch of scenarios for EMT training like this one:

http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/content/uploads/sites/23/2016/05/M003.pdf

In it we find a young adult diabetic patient with a Rx for insulin, able to speak but not feeling well, alert and oriented x3 but "sluggish to respond" and a CC of "not feeling right".  He has an O2 sat of 95 and respiratory rate of 14, no mention of cyanosis, vitals normal except for low glucose.  Why does the grading criteria call it a critical fail to not provide O2?  As a not-yet-certified EMT student with no field experience, I'd think this pt doesn't seem to be in any sort of respiratory distress; he just needs some glucose paste and continued monitoring enroute to the ER (and probably doesn't even need the ride, but I understand we are always supposed to transport everyone unless they sign waivers since there are problems that require more skill/equipment than we have to Dx.)  Are we supposed to automatically provide O2 for everyone (except those in hypoxic drive), regardless of O2 sat?

Just when I think I'm starting to get a handle on this... 

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On 10/15/2019 at 11:15 AM, Jim Squire said:

I'm learning to become an EMT, so be easy on me for asking this newbie question, but it points to something about O2 adminstration that I don't understand.

Virginia's health department posts a bunch of scenarios for EMT training like this one:

http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/content/uploads/sites/23/2016/05/M003.pdf

In it we find a young adult diabetic patient with a Rx for insulin, able to speak but not feeling well, alert and oriented x3 but "sluggish to respond" and a CC of "not feeling right".  He has an O2 sat of 95 and respiratory rate of 14, no mention of cyanosis, vitals normal except for low glucose.  Why does the grading criteria call it a critical fail to not provide O2?  As a not-yet-certified EMT student with no field experience, I'd think this pt doesn't seem to be in any sort of respiratory distress; he just needs some glucose paste and continued monitoring enroute to the ER (and probably doesn't even need the ride, but I understand we are always supposed to transport everyone unless they sign waivers since there are problems that require more skill/equipment than we have to Dx.)  Are we supposed to automatically provide O2 for everyone (except those in hypoxic drive), regardless of O2 sat?

Just when I think I'm starting to get a handle on this... 

Without more information, I'm willing to wager this is likely a matter of local protocol not evidence based practice. Based on the information provided the patient doesn't have an oxygenation problem.

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Thanks rock_shoes. Makes me feel like I am learning something. Although I’m a bit surprised that local protocols don’t reflect evidence based research (which is just common sense here), especially as a “critical fail” point.  Well, as I said, I’m new to this. 

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