NSW NETS – Moving more than retrieval teams

Dr Thelma Arieta Fa’asalele1

1NSW NETS, Bankstown, Australia

NSW NETS – Moving more than retrieval teams.
New South Wales is a large state, more than 800, 00km2, where distance limits access for patients from peripheral hospital to tertiary care. Some time-critical conditions require sub-specialist expertise outside the scope of the retrieval medical teams. If left untreated, transferring the untreated patient may be a high risk, unstable and potentially lethal process. NSW NETS (Newborn and paediatric Emergency Transport Service) adopts a patient focused approach for its patients, and utilizes a protocol that facilitates urgent sub-specialist intervention prior to transfer.
This presentation will focus on how the service has expedited subspecialists in paediatric neurosurgery, ENT surgery, cardiothoracic surgery, anaesthesiology, neonatology and obstetrics . Particular mention will be made of the mobile paediatric neurosurgical service (MPNS), which provides rapid-response neurosurgery for remote or urgent paediatric patients. A review of the past 11 years shows lives have been saved with good outcomes.
This model of care is particularly relevant in Australia, where distance limits urgent access to tertiary sub-speciality care.
1. Qwler BK et al. Mobile pediatric neurosurgery for remote or urgent neurosurgery for remote or urgent pediatric patients. JNeurosurg Pediatr Jun16:340-345,2015, 2015.
2. Gilligan JE et al. Mobile Intensive services in in rural South Australia. Med J Aust 171:617-620, 1999.


A NZ-born Samoan doctor who graduated from the Auckland School of Medicine 30 years ago. She  ‘crossed the ditch’ in 1997 and at present  is one of two full-time career medical officers at NSW NETS. This role is both  clinical and non-clinical. She has 28 years of neonatal/paediatric experience of which  22 years has been  in retrieval medicine at NETS. She has a reputation of writing ‘great rosters’ for her junior medical colleagues and is especially  passionate about fatigue management.  Despite her prolonged stay in Australia she still retains her Kiwi accent.


Recent Comments
    Recent Comments