Each year, over 5000 patients present to Emergency Departments throughout Victoria with burn injuries (1).
Burns range from the most minor and common of wounds, dealt with in the community, to the most severe and devastating of injuries. They are highly variable and individual injuries affecting all ages and social groups. In general terms, relevant assessment and management of the burnt patient is based on the size, depth and anatomical site of the injury, mechanism of injury and the presence of co-existing conditions.
The aim of these guidelines is to provide direction to health care professionals caring for adults or children with burn injuries in the primary care setting in Victoria. This includes emergency department staff, general practitioners, physicians, general surgeons, nurses and paramedics.
The guidelines include:
- Transfer & referral criteria
- Initial management of patients with severe burn injuries
- Burns assessment
- Management of patients with a minor burn injuries
- First aid
The guidelines are a joint initiative between the Victorian state wide burns services at The Alfred hospital and Royal Children’s Hospital which aims to provide a more consistent standard of burns management, particularly in the early stages post injury, in order to improve outcomes for those who are injured. The guidelines are based on evidence where available and consensus expert opinion.