EUSEM actions for Ukraine


Interview with Dr Khoury, President of EUSEM

How to prepare for the influx of victims? How to apply a tourniquet? How do you blow out a pneumothorax? Not all Ukrainian health professionals are trained in emergency medicine. EUSEM is preparing pedagogical video clips at high speed, in conjunction with the WHO Academy. These capsules are a summary of the training offered by this new WHO "training centre", based in Lyon.

Abdo Khoury is an emergency doctor at the University Hospital of Besançon. Since 2020, he has been president of the European Society for Emergency Medicine (EUSEM). EUSEM federates 36 national emergency medicine societies, including the Ukrainian society, ARCEM (All-Ukrainian Resuscitation Council and Emergency Medicine).

Dr Khoury, do you have any news from Ukraine?
Yes, we are following the situation very closely. We had three meetings this week with our ARCEM colleagues based in Kiev. Already on 25 February, EUSEM publicly expressed its support for Ukrainian emergency workers and then condemned the targeting of health professionals.

How can EUSEM help the doctors there?
We are a learned society. Our mission is not to send personnel or equipment. So we are going to do what we are good at: providing the crucial knowledge that our emergency and non-emergency colleagues need on the ground as quickly as possible.

EUSEM is working with WHO, through its Academy, to prepare urgent one-minute educational videos for health professionals in the field. How to deal with a massive influx of victims? How to set up triage? How to define the areas for victims who can walk and those who cannot? How do you apply a tourniquet? How to exufflate a pneumothorax? We answer these questions with short instructional videos.

What is important is efficiency: our colleagues in Ukraine must be able to learn quickly, without spending hours on Youtube. Above all, we would like to make these capsules downloadable, so that they can access them even in bomb shelters or if there are internet cuts.

We are working hard to produce these videos, in order to put the first ones online within 8 days. In Besançon, where I am usually in charge of the simulation at the medical school, we have already shot the damage control video. If necessary, we will add to the videos links to sources of information deemed reliable by EUSEM. The videos will be open source, and will be posted on the WHO Academy website. Of course EUSEM is doing this for free and is leaving all copyright to WHO.


WHO academy

Overview of the WHO Academy's programme on mass casualty

What is the WHO Academy?
This newly created Academy is a kind of "training centre" for the WHO. France is the main investor in this project, which is strongly supported by President Macron. The construction of the buildings of this new campus, located in Lyon, will be completed in 2024. But training courses are already taking place.

The WHO Academy aims to provide a single training platform for all global health actors. The aim is to ensure that the WHO's recommendations can be applied more quickly in the field. These training courses will be mainly distance learning, and will rely heavily on artificial intelligence, virtual reality and simulation. EUSEM will be a partner.

One of the first projects of the Academy was the implementation of a training programme on the massive influx of victims in emergency services. In France, we have the White Plan. Here, we are still thinking ahead, even before the White Plan is activated. How can an emergency service, whatever the country and the resources, manage a sudden influx of victims? How can it be organised from the very first hour? The challenge is to propose a model that can be reproduced throughout the world. This training course comprises about fifteen sessions and is spread over 3-4 days, ideally face-to-face.

For this programme, the teaching teams are made up of doctors and nurses. There are already 7 or 8 French trainers. Despite the pandemic, this training has been delivered in ten countries, including Turkey, Armenia, Belgium and Greece. In France, the Besançon University Hospital and the Croix-Rousse Hospital in Lyon were the first institutions to receive training.

Currently, training is underway in Qatar, to prepare hospitals in case of an incident during the football World Cup. The capsules that we are going to make available to our Ukrainian colleagues are condensed versions of the training modules.

(Interview by Benoît Blanquart)


 Abdo Khoury

 Abdo Khoury

Please find the link to the original French article: