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Challenges of Mass Casualty Management at a Regional Trauma Centre in Sub-Saharan Africa

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DOI: 10.4236/health.2014.66068    4,512 Downloads   5,814 Views   Citations


Background: Mass Casualty incidents usually overwhelm the capabilities of any centre. It is an event whose nature is undetermined, unexpected and disrupts the normal trauma care in a hospital. Hospitals have established protocols to deal with mass casualty when it arises. Objectives: We sought to profile the presentations of mass casualty incidents and challenges in management in a regional trauma Centre in North-West Nigeria. Methodology: A retrospective look at the records of mass casualty presentations in our centre over a 12-month period (January-December 2011) was done. A mass casualty event in our setting is the presentation to our facility of eight or more patients from the same cause at the same. Results: There were a total of 18 mass casualty presentations with an average of 1.5 per month. There were a total of 236 victims including those brought in dead (BID). Males were 203 (86%) and females 33 (16%) with an M:F ratio of 6:1. Majority of the victims 222 (94%) were above 16 years and all the victims had a common mechanism of injury which was Road traffic crashes. One hundred and forty-three (61%) of the victims sustained lacerations and bruises while 31 (13%) were polytraumatized. Sixty-two (26%) of the victims were BID’S from the scenes of the Road Crashes. The outcome was that 131 (75%) of the victims were treated and discharged while 41 (24%) were admitted for further management. Two (1%) patients died during resuscitation and within 24 hours. Conclusion: Mass casualty presentations are a regular event in our centre hence there is the need for the establishment of a protocol and regular mass casualty drills to cope with future occurrences.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Oboirien, M. (2014) Challenges of Mass Casualty Management at a Regional Trauma Centre in Sub-Saharan Africa. Health, 6, 491-495. doi: 10.4236/health.2014.66068.


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