Desert Island Airways


Every now and then, discussion amongst clinicians turns to the hypothetical of “what if you were stranded on a desert island?” and then leads into fierce debate on emergency drugs, preferred contents of a doctors bag or various airway devices. Of course all of this is hypothetical – not many of us are going to be stranded, […]

All About That (MedSTAR) Base

Paramedic firefighter heroes2

Readers of the blog will know that I spent the second half of the year with MedSTAR, South Australia’s retrieval service and part of SA Ambulance Service (SAAS). As a rural doctor I am usually a user of this service. It’s taken a few years after being invited to coordinate time off to arrange time out of practice […]

GP Anaesthesia 2020 & Beyond

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The concept of a “GP anaesthetist” or “GP obstetrician” can be a vexed one. Colleagues with the appropriate specialist ticket (FANZCA & FRANZCOG respectively in Australia) may question why the heck a general practitioner is meddling in their arena of expertise. We may hear similar from FACEMs in regard to emergency care. I have no doubt […]

Got droperidol?

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If you’ve been following blogs such as THE PHARM recently, you’ll probably have seen reference to a chap called Minh le Cong and a drug called ketamine.  Now it’s no secret that many in the prehospital and emergency fields are fond of ketamine – it’s a useful dissociative agent with analgesic properties and can be […]

Frozen Out

Disappointing news this week from CountryHealth SA – on April Fools Day they announced that an agreement has been reached with the AMA(SA) regarding rural doctor contracts …but neglected to inform the Rural Doctors Association of SA, who not only represent rural doctors in this State but with whom CHSA were supposedly negotiating. The current […]

Lessons for management of acute agitation in rural EDs

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The South Australian Coroner has just released a report into the sad death of Mr Simos, who died whilst awaiting transfer from a rural ED back to a tertiary centre where he was under a current detention order. The Coroners report can be accessed here. As with all Coroner’s reports, it makes for salutary reading and […]


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A reminder that smaccUS is rapidly approaching – from the orginal smacc2013 held in Sydney, then smaccGOLD on the Gold Coast, in 2015 the world’s most exciting and innocative critical care conference will be held in Chicago. Wondering what all the fuss is about?  Have a read of the reviews from previous smacc conferences here I am putting […]

Critically Ill Airway


I am just putting final touches to the “Being Expert Enough” session for the forthcoming Critical Ill Airway Course to be held at The Alfred Hospital in Melbourne, May 7-8th 2015. The course is being convened by that powerhouse of energy, Dr Chris Nickson of LITFL, smacc & RAGE podcast fame. Co-conspirators include external collaborators like Scott […]

Updated RERN Action Cards

Extra pages can be added and content modified to preference. So good, I decided to make my own for RERN...

I’ve been playing around with cognitive aids such as checklists and action cards for a couple of years (some are available via the RESOURCES section of this site or RURALDOCTORS.NET. Most of these were designed for handing off to nursing staff in the rural ED, partly to mitigate against the phenomenon of people disappearing off to the ‘big […]