Triage methodology following exposure to chemical agents


  • Lina Thors
  • Elisabeth Wigenstam
  • Anders Bucht

Publish date: 2019-09-02

Report number: FOI-R--4726--SE

Pages: 32

Written in: Swedish


  • Situational awareness
  • prehospital triage
  • chemical intoxication


Triage systems are implemented to provide as good benefit as possible for the greatest amount of people when healthcare resources are limited or strained due to the number of injured individuals. The aim is to deliver the "right patient to the right place at the right time" which in the first instance is a basic process based on distributive justice. The triage systems utilized in Swedish prehospital healthcare generally originate from traumatic injuries and do not clearly include the specific considerations of chemical intoxications. The aim of this study was to compile information on triage methodology used nationally and internationally, and to form a base of knowledge that can be used for development of a simple and robust Swedish prehospital triage system for chemical intoxication. Based on literature studies, interviews of medical responders and observations during practical exercises, basic principles for triage in C-events have been described. Further work is required to optimize and implement the triage system for operational use. The study was undertaken as a collaboration between the National Centre for Disaster Toxicology (KcC) under the National Board of Health and Welfare and FOI CBRN Defence and Security.