With the year drawing to a close, and 2017 lurking around the corner, I’d like to take the opportunity to thank our authors, author assistants, editors, readers and reviewers for their support during 2016. It has been a tremendous year for the journal. We maintained our second tier ranking, gained Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) indexing and are co-publishing a regular feature with some of the best regional journals in the world (check out the Global research highlights).
The bystander effect – or more appropriately, bystander apathy – refers to a situation where individuals fail to render assistance to a casualty as long as multiple other individuals are present; apparently the more the individuals present, the less likely assistance is to be forthcoming. There are numerous social experiments based on the bystander effect and the phenomenon has been studied for nearly fifty years.
A number of African Federation for Emergency Medicine (AFEM) contributors have spent considerable time putting together French and English language-version Rapid Assessment Protocols, or RAPs. The aim of the project was to produce a quick assistance resource- based on existing AFEM handbook content- for nurses, mid-level clinicians, trainees and specialists within the African low and middle income context.
With less than a month to go to the International Conference on Emergency Medicine (to be held on African soil for the first time) I thought it is appropriate to reflect on what exactly it means to provide emergency care as a profession. I’m quite sure many of you have seen the bemused look on family and friends’ faces when you tell them that emergency care is actually a career choice, your career choice, and not just a stepping stone to something bigger and better. “Why not become a specialist?” they ask, “you have so much to offer”. Well I agree, I do have much to offer.