Helicopter medics can give ketamine

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Yorkshire Air Ambulance paramedics treating patients in severe pain can now administer the powerful drug ketamine.

Until recently, only doctors were able to administer the drug at an incident.

Now, paramedics can give ketamine to patients in severe pain with approval from the on-call doctor at Yorkshire Ambulance Service.

This will help people such as those with multiple fractures who could be trapped in a vehicle for some time before they can be airlifted to hospital.

YAA medical adviser and Dr Jez Pinnell said up to now paramedics could only give people morphine and entonox.

“But, if a patient has multiple fractures and is in severe pain, those drugs and interventions are not strong enough to provide effective relief,” he said.

“Now, strict protocols have been put in place to let air ambulance paramedics administer low doses of ketamine which is really good news for the patient and for the paramedic.”

“There is nothing worse than having a patient in a lot of pain you can’t help.”

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