As well as manufacturing its own designs, Openhouse is often approached by clinicians, ambulance services and hospital trusts looking for a way to bring their concept to reality, so the company considers itself lucky enough to work with a whole range of organisations in manufacturing their exciting ideas. One of the most innovative designs Openhouse has been privileged to work on has been the SCRAM™ bag.
The SCRAM™ bag is the brainchild of HEMS paramedic Paul Swinton and paramedic Neil Sinclair. It has been developed in partnership with Openhouse and Scottish Health Innovations Ltd (SHIL), who work in partnership with NHS Scotland to identify, protect, develop and commercialise healthcare innovations to improve patient care. Using their personal experience from roles in the Scottish Air Ambulance Service (SAS) and the Emergency Medical Retrieval Service, Paul and Neil developed the concept with support from SAS and SHIL.
SCRAM™ (Structured CRitical Airway Management) enhances the performance of airway management by focusing on process improvement through design. Whilst most other manufacturers focus on the storage and transportation of equipment, systemisation, standardisation, cognitive offloading, human factors and good governance are core principles to the design of SCRAM™.
Recently published research1 evidences SCRAM™ as a meaningful cognitive offloading tool; it reduces the time to intervention by up to a third and reduces error by up to a phenomenal 85%. This is of particular importance now, during the COVID-19 pandemic, with increased cognitive demands of managing oneself, the team, the environment, the associated risks of error and time to intervention. Dr Michael Donald, a Consultant in emergency and retrieval medicine, started utilising within NHS Tayside in 2019 and stated, “It is intuitively simple, making it much easier for an individual already familiar with the procedures to do the right thing in the right order.”
The SCRAM™ bag has a number of defining features, which make it the simplest option in the most complex situations. Colour coding throughout the bag indicates which equipment corresponds to which procedure, to reduce cognitive load and quickly draw the user’s attention to the relevant kit. As well as the primary use area kit dump, a secondary surgical kit dump area can be rapidly deployed at the tug a tab. This differently coloured ‘clean slate’ signifies to the team a change in the airway escalation model. A checklist pouch and lockable zips assist with swift auditing, while Openhouse’s signature wipe clean micrAgard fabric boasts exceptional anti-bacterial, anti-microbial properties to prevent cross contamination.
SCRAM™ is currently being used for advanced airway management by high performance teams in both the pre-hospital and hospital environments in the UK and other parts of the world.
As well as the Adult SCRAM™, Openhouse has also produced the Paediatric SCRAM™ bag and the Paediatric EMS SCRAM™. Not only that, but the SCRAM methodology will soon encompass an even broader range of situations and conditions. Later this year, two new bags will be introduced to the collection: Tactical SCRAM™, for use in the military environment; and Rx SCRAM™, a platform to simplify and standardise emergency anaesthesia.