11h CPDConference

First Responders Conference

2-Day Conference for First Responders

First Responders Conference - Melbourne 2020


26 - 27 Mar 2020
Oaks On Collins ,
480 Collins St

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Why Attend

First responders are on the front line, dealing with life, death, and trauma daily. From emergencies in your suburb to the most remote areas, you play a crucial role in our community. Attend this new conference to connect with your colleagues and learn about:

  • A practical approach to de-escalating aggression and violence
  • How to identify and document forensic injury
  • Responding to acute mental health presentations
  • How to assess for signs of acute stroke
  • Recognising PTSD in first responders
  • An opportunity to network amongst your peers and much more…
Don’t miss out on an opportunity to attend this new event. Book now!

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Day One

8:30 Registration for Day One


Welcome and Introduction

Jeff Kenneally

Freaky Friday – A Day in the Life of a First Responder

Between 2017 and 2018, ESTA dispatched over 2.1 million events that were responded to by first responders from Victoria’s various emergency services. This opening session will look at a day in the life of a first responder. It includes:

  • What was your best and worst memory of being a first responder?
  • What are the daily challenges faced by first responders?
  • What do we have to know about the changes in CPD for first responders?
  • What is your message for new first responders?
Jeff Kenneally

Back to Basics: Essential Components of the Primary Survey

The initial assessment and management of a person who has suffered trauma are critical to their outcome and recovery. This session will discuss the rapid systematic primary survey, which is based on established frameworks. Case scenarios will be used to demonstrate actions within different contexts. It includes:

  • Cervical spine stabilisation
  • Type of trauma, danger and response
  • A – Airway
  • B – Breathing and oxygenation
  • C – Circulation and bleeding
  • D – Disability and delegating tasks
11:00 Morning Tea


Penetrating Trauma

Penetrating injuries and lacerations are some of the most graphic injuries you may encounter, and they may present as anything from a stab wound to evisceration. In this session, we will discuss:

  • How can we assess for additional injuries secondary to penetrating trauma?
  • Direct pressure v tourniquets – when and how do we use them?
  • What are the special considerations for specific penetrating trauma, e.g. neck or spinal penetrating injuries or evisceration?
12:15 Lunch and Networking

Jeff Kenneally

Managing Severe Burns

Severe burns (>20% TBSA burns, high voltage electrical injury (>1000 volts) or inhalation injury with or without dermal injury) require immediate treatment to minimise injury and prevent mortality. This session will discuss the latest updates in managing severe burns. It includes:

  • In what way can we effectively manage pain in severe burn patients?
  • When is intraosseous access needed in treating a burn patient?
  • How can we treat a suspected airway burn?

Pink Blood? Carbon Monoxide Poisoning – A Silent Killer

Carbon monoxide is an odourless, tasteless and colourless gas, which means it can be inhaled without people realising. This invisible substance is linked to preventable mortalities related to the use of gas appliances that can be significant sources of carbon monoxide. This session considers:

  • Prevention first – the importance of awareness and safety
  • Who may be particularly susceptible to carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Common causes of accidental and non-accidental exposure
  • The clinical features of mild, acute and chronic carbon monoxide poisoning
  • The immediate first-aid required
  • An overview of management principles including resuscitation
3:00 Afternoon Tea

Ella Smith

Opioid Overdose – Clinical Assessment and Management

Opioids are widely prescribed, frequently administered by nurses and commonly used in the community. These medicines and drugs such as morphine, heroin and oxycodone have huge potential to cause significant harm. Because of the action of these substances and their capacity for respiratory depression, opioids are being implicated in a large and rising number of fatal overdoses. The prevalence of this demands that nurses are well informed about:

  • Why opioids cause such high numbers of overdose deaths
  • The signs and symptoms of opioid overdose
  • How to assess and recognise an opioid overdose
  • How an opioid overdose is managed
  • The guidelines for the administration of naloxone
  • How to prevent an opioid overdose – safe practises and harm minimisation
4:30 Close of Day One of Conference

Day Two

9:00 Commencement of Day Two

Narelle Fraser

It Isn't a Crime to be Stressed: The Lived Experiences of a Former Victorian Police Officer

First responders, including police officers, are witnesses to the best and worst of humanity. This session will showcase the career of Narelle Fraser, a former Victorian police officer. It includes a case study. Learn:

  • What were the challenges of being a police officer?
  • What was Narelle’s most memorable case?
  • How did Narelle deal with work-related stress?
  • What did Narelle love about her job?
  • What advice does Narelle have for first responders?

Note: There will be a 10-minute break at 10.00 am

11:00 Morning Tea

Amanda Wynne

Mandatory Reporting – Your Responsibility

There are several mandatory reporting requirements that affect all first responders. This session will encourage you to consider the implications of mandatory reporting for your role as a first responder. It includes:

  • What is mandatory reporting?
  • Do you know what your responsibilities are?
  • What should you do if you suspect abuse or neglect within the workplace, including for civilians, patients and colleagues?
Geoff Ahern

Acute Mental Health Examination: For All First Responders

It is essential that all first responders have the knowledge, skills and confidence to perform an acute mental health examination. This practical session will draw on relevant case studies to demonstrate how to assess an acutely unwell person with a mental health disorder. It includes:

  • What are the basic principles of a mental health examination when someone is acutely unwell?
  • What is distress and what clinical situations can this be seen in?
  • Caring during a crisis – what do we need to say, do and know, to support a person?
1:15 Lunch and Networking

Geoff Ahern

De-Escalating Aggression and Violence

Unfortunately, aggression and violence towards first responders are increasing. Patients may behave erratically as a result of their condition, and you may be the first person that faces this stressed and aggressive person. In order to keep yourself safe, it is very important that you are aware of the skills needed to de-escalate a situation and reduce a person’s level of agitation and aggression. This session explores methods and insights that help to prevent workplace aggression. It includes:

  • How can you deal with aggression?
  • What strategies are useful to de-escalate aggression?
  • The use of language and body language – what matters?
  • How can you reduce potential harm to yourself and others?
  • Who can you seek help from if exposed to danger?
3:00 Afternoon Tea

Geoff Ahern

When the Dust Settles – Mental Health Issues in First Responders

First responders are exposed to traumatic events on a daily basis and, because of this, they are at a high risk of developing mental health issues. This session will discuss:

  • What is vicarious trauma?
  • What are some examples of maladaptive coping mechanisms?
  • Is there a way to prevent or reduce mental health issue rates in first responders?
4:30 Close of Conference and Evaluations

The Goal

Need for Program

The opportunity for first responders to improve health outcomes through proactive assessment and correct management relies on sound knowledge of the latest evidence. Education that is specifically tailored to first responders is crucial if morbidity, mortality, and permanent disability rates are to be minimised. This timely conference provides an opportunity for first responders to gain evidenced updates.

Purpose of Program

The purpose of this conference is to improve the health outcomes of people who are treated by first responders by preparing them for a wide array of situations so they can properly assess and manage all types of injuries and situations.

Your learning outcomes:

Provide pre-hospital emergency care that is aligned with current standards and well-researched practices
Minimise complications through improved assessment and management
Improve health outcomes by implementing evidence-based knowledge for managing a range of emergencies
Be resilient and cope better with stress in today’s workplace


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Jeff Kenneally

Jeff Kenneally has a lifelong commitment to pre-hospital care, having served as an operational param... Read More

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Narelle Fraser

Narelle was a member of Victoria Police for 27 years, 15 of those as a detective with homicide, rape... Read More

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Geoffrey Ahern

Geoffrey Ahern is a senior mental health clinician and educator who splits his time between working ... Read More

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To Be Determined

... Read More

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Amanda Wynne

Amanda Wynne is a barrister at the Victorian Bar whose practice includes family law, child abuse, fa... Read More

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Ella Smith

Ella Smith began her nursing career in alcohol and other drug services when she undertook clinical p... Read More


26 - 27 Mar 2020


Oaks On Collins
480 Collins St
Melbourne VIC,3000


$759.00 (two days)
Book Online Now  

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