Though only occasionally called on to manage a medical emergency, the ophthalmologist must be aware of the diagnostic and therapeutic steps necessary for proper care of a patient in acute distress. Infrequent use of these life-support techniques makes periodic review particularly important. Also, it is advisable for a member of the office staff to be trained in basic life support. Both the American Red Cross and the American Heart Association offer courses in basic life support (BLS), advanced cardiac life support (ACLS), and pediatric advanced life support (PALS). In addition to a review of life-support techniques, it is appropriate to periodically review office procedures, medications, and the equipment needed for each category of medical emergency.
Excerpted from BCSC 2020-2021 series: Section 1 - Update on General Medicine. For more information and to purchase the entire series, please visit https://www.aao.org/bcsc.