Vital Equipment for First Responders

Reducing delays for lifesaving medical help

Lifesaving equipment is crucial to have on hand at the scene of rural emergencies. And often lacking in rural and remote areas. But critical illness does not recognise geography. And that’s why, finding funding solutions through Rural Doctors Foundation was vital.

With the help of our Grants for Good Health program and funding received from NAB Foundation,  rural clinicians can be part of a ‘rural responder network.’ And also have access to medical equipment that helps them respond quickly and well in emergencies. 

Every second, every hour counts

When people suffer critical illnesses or medical emergencies in rural communities, distance is often a problem. Remoteness can make it difficult for ambulances and even specialist helicopter services, to arrive quickly. Medical experts describe this as a ‘trauma gap’ in rural communities. So it means patients who suffer illness or trauma from road crashes or farm accidents may face large delays. Even though they may need time-critical help.

Sandpiper Australia is a not-for-profit entity that helps save lives in rural communities. They see that experienced rural generalist doctors can help bridge the trauma gap. Given they have the right tools to do so, rural doctors can be effective first responders. When they have better equipment and better training, they are able to save more lives. 

Reducing delays for lifesaving medical help

Lifesaving equipment is crucial to have on hand at the scene of rural emergencies. And often lacking in rural and remote areas. But critical illness does not recognise geography. With this equipment, rural clinicians can be part of a ‘rural responder network.’ And also have access to medical equipment that helps them respond quickly and well in emergencies. 

Every second, every hour counts

When people suffer critical illnesses or medical emergencies in rural communities, distance is often a problem. Remoteness can make it difficult for ambulances and even specialist helicopter services, to arrive quickly. Medical experts describe this as a ‘trauma gap’ in rural communities. So it means patients who suffer illness or trauma from road crashes or farm accidents may face large delays. Even though they may need time-critical help.

Sandpiper Australia is a not-for-profit entity that helps save lives in rural communities by providing first responder kits. They see that experienced rural generalist doctors can help bridge the trauma gap. Given they have the right tools to do so, rural doctors can be effective first responders. When they have better equipment and better training, they are able to save more lives. Rural Doctors Foundation has a goal  to equip as many rural clinicians as possible with standardised Sandpiper Emergency Kits.  With the support of NAB Foundation, we are able to deliver even more kits so our rural doctors are well equipped as first responders. 

Sandpiper Emergency Kits help to close the 'trauma gap'

Rural Doctors Foundation is campaigning to have pre-filled bags of emergency equipment available to all rural doctors. Known as Sandpiper Bags, they allow rural clinicians to be able to help at the scene of rural incidents. The bags hold important pre-hospital trauma equipment. They are stocked to a fit-for-purpose contents list and are easily carried on the back into the scene. However remote the location.

The supply of the kits to rural doctors is possible through funding received from generous donations from our supporters. 

“Purpose-designed pre-hospital bags contain sufficient equipment to allow trained responders to deliver meaningful interventions on scene,”

– Sandpiper Australia.

The organisation is now growing a network of 'first responders.'

Rural doctors are often the first on the scene of traumatic accidents. They often arrive before the ambulance or for severe cases, the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Rural doctors are  liaising with local ambulance and emergency services. 

The initiative is building on the success of a similar model in Scotland. Here, Sandpiper recognised that critical illness does not respect geography. That a ‘rural responder network’ was needed. Sandpiper Australia is using its Grants for Good Health funding to establish a similar rural responder network here in Australia. The core focus is to eliminate the ‘trauma gap’ in rural communities. At the heart of this response, is issuing Sandpiper Bags to eligible rural generalist doctors. 

As well as having the right equipment (Sandpiper Bags) on hand, clinicians also need training. The vision of Sandpiper Australia which is supported by Rural Doctors Foundation is for rural clinicians to be able to undergo further first-responder training. As well as forming a network of rural clinicians who are able to step up and act in times of crisis.  

The impact of this life-saving initiative on rural communities is positive. And it’s possible thanks to those who generously support the work of Rural Doctors Foundation.  We encourage communities to raise funds to equip their local doctor with a Sandpiper Bag. 

Are you inspired to fund more critical projects like this to improve the lives of rural and remote people?

By supporting Rural Doctors Foundation, we can roll out more important initiatives like this for the people of country Australia.