Thursday, September 24, 2009

Code Blue Drill

We had a code blue drill yesterday.

I have re-certified my BCLS, Basic Cardiac Life Support, recently. I have yet to attend the LSCN, Life Support Course for Nurses, although we were taught the required skills in school. For my ward's code blue drill, I was designated as the second nurse-to-arrive, i.e. responsible for the chest compression.


To prepare for the drill, my ward manager (NO), held code blue rehearsals on the day before and the morning before the code blue drill. At our first rehearsal, NO was role-playing the first nurse-to-arrive. When the code blue alarm sounded, I rushed into the room with the emergency trolley. Then the NO painted the scenario to me, "You see me trying to resuscitate the patient, what do you say?"

Thanks to my BCLS training, I automatically replied "I know CPR, can I help?"

"Of course you know CPR, you're a trained nurse!"

Ha ha. This became a joke that greeted us at work the next morning.


JCI visitors paid a surprise visit to the ward just before our code blue drill. We, the staff nurses, prayed very hard that they would leave before our code blue drill started. Thankfully, our prayers were answered.

The code blue drill proceeded as rehearsed. I was focusing on the chest compression. There was a visiting admin staff who was trained on BCLS. She took over my compression after the "switch" count. Then all of us stood clear for the defibrillation. After the defibrillation, I continued with the chest compression. I continued to pump away until I felt a gentle slap on my buttocks.

Apparently the doctor had declared sinus bradycardia rhythm. I was so focused on the chest compression that I was still pumping away on a "patient that had recovered". My colleague SSN R, playing the role of the defibrillation nurse, gave me the discreet slap on the butt to signal for me to stop.

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