Basic Life Support and Advanced Cardiac Life Support: Knowledge of Medical Students in New Delhi

Sinha Akritia, Mehrotra Mayank, Devgan .


Background: The chain of survival includes basic life support (BLS) as an important element. Knowledge of CPR is an important part of medical student’s training but there is still no routine training included in medical undergraduate teaching in developing countries like India, thus, medical graduates often face difficulty in emergency situations.
Aim: To assess BLS/ACLS knowledge among medical students from different professional years in New Delhi. Methodology: A multi-centric study was planned as an analytical cross-sectional study with study sample drawn from medical students enrolled in various professional years and interns during the session 2012-2013 at 5 medical colleges of New Delhi. The sample was randomly drawn from each professional year
and interns of 5 teaching hospitals of New Delhi. The study was conducted from May to August 2013.A predesigned self-administered objective questionnaire was distributed and15 minutes were given to each participant. Twenty questions were based on BLS while ten on ACLS.
Results: The data from 288 responders was analyzed using Microsoft Excel 2010 and Stata S.E 9.0.The mean scores of first-year students in BLS and ACLS were the lowest, 4.56 + 2.76 and 1.65 + 1.35 respectively while the mean scores of second-,third- and final-year students in BLS and ACLS were 6.28 +3.03 and 2.6 + 1.68, 7.75 + 3.34 and 3.62 + 2.47, 10.17 + 2.4 and 6.1 + 2.04 respectively. The mean scores of interns were the highest, 10.85 +1.83 in BLS and 6.35 + 2.59 respectively(p<0.001). The mean score of study sample was 7.416 + 3.55 in BLS and 3.7 + 2.66 in ACLS.Those who received a formal training in BLS/ACLS had a mean score of 11.07+ 1.86 compared to those
who had not received formal training and had a score of 6.99 + 3.43(p<0.001).
Conclusion: The study revealed that the medical undergraduates (UGs) had inadequate knowledge in BLS and ACLS. Most of them support the idea of training in BLS/ACLS to be a part of the UG curriculum.
Those who were performing CPR (interns) had a significantly higher knowledge than those who didn’t. The knowledge of formally trained students is significantly higher than untrained students.
Key words: Basic life support(BLS), advanced cardiac life support(ACLS), CPR, training, knowledge.

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