Should the first aider use the scoop stretcher or the spine board?


When carrying out rescue and transporting patients, it is important to select appropriate equipment for the work. Determining whether to use a traditional spine board or a scoop stretcher in a particular situation depends on the challenges of the specific situation and the understanding of acceptable standards, as well as some personal circumstances.

Rescue board or spine board has existed for many years and has been used by all types of rescue personnel – firefighters, search and rescue personnel, ambulances, lifeguards, industrial rescue services, etc. This is a proven and effective device, but in recent years, the terminology and guidelines of these devices have changed. Today, the spine board is mainly used for rescue – that is, fixing patients to move them from a narrow space. The cocooning effect of the board makes the rescue process easier, but the board is stiff and the patient is uncomfortable. The spider belt is effective but it takes some time to fix.

In British Columbia, paramedics use the rescue board only when there is a special need for rescue, or if there is no shovel stretcher, the spine board should be removed immediately after the patient is placed on the stretcher, unless the patient needs complete spinal fixation.

In most medical response situations, this spin stretcher is a simple, fast-moving device that slides under the patient with minimal movement. The length of the scoop stretcher can be adjusted according to the patient’s height, and the board is divided into two halves with latches on the head and foot ends. Staggered straps and buckles can be completed in less than a minute.

The scoop stretcher is mainly used as a lifting device. Once the patient is on the stretcher, it is easy to take it out. It has recently been shown that in some cases, complete spinal fixation is more harmful than a range of exercises.

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Which one should I choose, scoop stretcher or spine board?

The EA-5B scoop stretcher is more of a lifting device, while the spine board is more suitable for use in places where there may be stairs or narrow spaces (such as industrial sites). There are also practical differences between the application modes of the two devices. The EA-1F1/F2/F3 spine stretcher is equipped with a spider belt, which must be spread out on the patient and then fixed. Rolling the patient onto the board may be uncomfortable, depending on their scope or type of injury. On the shovel stretcher, the shoulder belt and buckle remain connected, and the shovel structure provides patients with more comfort during the whole process. In addition, the fixed speed of shovel stretcher is much faster than that of lifeboard. It is very important to save time when dealing with serious first-aid injuries.

In most cases, the scoop stretcher is the preferred device for medical staff. There is no need to turn the patient over, as the stretcher can be easily divided into two parts to scoop up the patient, and the process is usually simpler than using a lifeboard. However, in the case of rescue, the spinal rescue board is a better choice, because it can better take the patient as a whole, so that the rescuers can rotate the lifeboard laterally and vertically through the narrow space. Most importantly, when choosing between the spine rescue board and the scoop stretcher, rescuers should assess the specific needs of each situation and select their equipment accordingly.


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