Section 2: Crisis Management


Another form of airway compromise is choking. In this instance, you may not have time to get PPE on as a casualty can deteriorate very quickly. We have all choked at some point on a piece of food, or something that has caught the back of our throat.  A choking incident can become very serious in a short space of time, and so quick intervention is key!

  • Encourage your casualty to cough: this is our natural instinct
  • Reassure your casualty
  • Stay with your casualty
  • Monitor using the AVPU scale

If the participant is choking then you should approach the participant from behind and carry out up to 5 back slaps, followed by up to 5 abdominal thrust, repeated until the airway is clear.

If this does not work, call 999 and carry out 5 abdominal thrusts.

Repeat until either, you clear the obstruction or your casualty becomes unconscious and you need to commence basic life support.

Please note: Emphasis on care when checking the airway between sets is advised as this is an aerosol generating procedure (AGP) especially in scenarios where PPE is not at the level to alleviate this additional risk.