NYAO, Ep: 052 – Critical Incident Debriefing

NYAO, Ep: 052 - Critical Incident Debriefing

The boys are launching their first multi-episode series- which is on the topic of Critical Incidents.

Melon met Irishman Mark McCarthy on a rugby pitch in 2012 but there’s more than just rugby banter in this episode. Mark, a senior trauma nurse instructor in the Middle East, shares his experiences and insights from the ER with Mike, Melon and Raf.

Mark and the NYAO team discuss:

  • The pressures on health professionals in the ER, decision making during critical incidents and how to effectively debrief these incidents.
  • What can individuals and teams learn from high pressure incidents?
  • What issues can be identified using training simulations?
  • What strategies work when you are helping people on what might be their worst day?

Mark reveals procedures and protocols developed over a life time of high stress, life or death medical scenarios. He talks about the importance of gaining consensus on what happened, and techniques he uses to establish this baseline. Mark covers Dr James Reason’s Swiss Cheese model for analysing and preventing the “organisational accident”- which both Raf and Melon have used extensively in aviation incident investigation.


Mark refers to this Critical Incident Debriefing Tool:


This episode is a lot more than just theoretical, and Mark shares from his own lived experience of having seen a critical incident take a rapid turn for the worse and explains the fundamental lessons he learned that day.

Thank you very much for the kind reviews and suggestions you have sent in. Please let us know if you have an area you would like us to explore.

If you are getting something out of it, please consider sharing our podcast into your network.

Rafael “Tio” Espinosa

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Paul “Melon” McFadden

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