Over 400 attendees made their way to the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham for the Scientific Symposium 2017 - a full day of resuscitation topics, sessions, interactive learning and top exhibitor stands.
The program covered new technology, targeted temperature management in the young and very young, statistic data on both in and out-of-hospital cardiac arrest and an excellent Laerdal Lecture in which Dr Dana Edelson explained how she uses big data to successfully predict cardiac arrest.
The day opened with an exciting and intriguing series of talks providing a look into data and technological advances to enhance survival for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. First to speak was Prof Gavin Perkins, presenting an evidence update on community resuscitation.
This was followed by a talk from Dr Mark Wilson on the Good Sam app - an app where those trained in CPR can register to be notified when a cardiac arrest occurs out-of-hospital near to them. They can often make it on scene before the emergency services with the skills and expertise needed to save a life. Dr Wilson was pleased to note that there were plenty of Good Sam users in the room - making the National Motorcycle Museum a rather safe space, even if not everyone was sure where the nearest defibrillator was! (An issue soon rectified in the next break - for future National Motorcycle Museum reference, it’s in the lobby!)
Dr Steven Brooks delivered an energetic talk on the use of AED drones and the potential to dispatch a small, unmanned aircraft containing a defibrillator to a cardiac arrest so as not to lose any time in the chain of survival. He asked the audience to try to roll their eyes less at the end of the session about the idea - and he succeeded.
The audience were also treated to an update on this year’s record-breaking Restart a Heart Day, delivered by RC (UK) Honorary Secretary Dr Andrew Lockey. This year saw an incredible 195,000 young people trained in lifesaving CPR. Wonderfully, many of the people in the room had been involved in the day and had their efforts applauded in person.
We were pleased to present honorary memberships to Dr David Pitcher, Michael Knott, Dr Fionna Moore, and Andy Swain (the latter in absentia). 2016 recipient Prof Charles Deakin was presented his at the AGM on the previous day.
Dr Zoe Fritz presented on the ReSPECT emergency care planning process to a rapt and attentive audience. Dr Fritz has been intricately involved in the development and roll out of the ReSPECT process - and gave a transparent look into ReSPECT - where it came from, how it was developed, and what the next steps are as more and more trusts across the United Kingdom implement it. As we move forward, the Resuscitation Council (UK) will continue to support the initiative. ReSPECT will aim to have an implementation network in place from January 2018, form an education subgroup, and have seminars and workshops in London in May 2018. The Symposium also had a dedicated ReSPECT stand where delegates could speak to ReSPECT project manager (and early implementer) Catherine Baldock.
In previous years; delegate feedback suggested more paediatric topics would enhance the program line up. This year saw that put to rights, with Dr Sophie Skellett of Great Ormond Street Hospital and Norway’s Dr Marianne Thoresen cover targeted temperature management in the young and the very young, respectively. Dr Skellett took us back through the history of cooling body temperature in instances of cardiac arrest, while Dr Thoresen talked us through years of her research and experimenting with cooling and temperature management.
A Lifesaver update was delivered by BAFTA winning director Martin Percy and Dr Andrew Lockey to uncover all the information on the latest Lifesaver scenario (designed with young lifesavers in mind) and the technologically advanced virtual reality version, Lifesaver VR.
The Laerdal Lecture, delivered this year by Dr Dana Edelson, was a soaring success with many quotable moments! Dr Edelson came over from America to deliver an exceptional presentation on predicting cardiac arrest. Dr Edelson was frustrated at resuscitating patients she felt shouldn’t arrested in the first place, saying “to pat myself on the back for resuscitating someone who shouldn’t have arrested in the first place felt wrong”. This motivated her to look into baseball (no, really) and big data as a way to predict cardiac arrest. Using patient data, algorithms, and clinician intuition she found a way to establish who was most likely to arrest - and learn to prevent it before it happened.
The talk was very well received - and the idea of using big data in the same way that huge net organisations (such as Amazon and Netflix) do was an interesting combination of mathematics, science and providing the best possible patient outcome.
The day culminated with a lively and amusing round-up of the top topics and papers for resuscitation from 2016 into 2017, presented by Executive Committee member Dr Jasmeet Soar and a presentation on outcomes from in-hospital cardiac arrest in the UK from National Cardiac Arrest Audit steering group chair Prof Jerry Nolan.
It was a brilliant day and one that posed lots of questions, and encouraged lots of discussion around topics and poster presentations. We would like to offer our thanks to those that attended, and ask that you keep an eye out for an even bigger and better event next year!
Photos from Scientific Symposium 2017: