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Fifteen-minute consultation: An overview of major incidents
  1. Stefani Widya1,
  2. Rebecca Hewitson2,
  3. Tulsi Patel3,
  4. Damian Roland3,
  5. Christopher Dadnam3
  1. 1 General Paediatrics, Leicester Royal Infirmary, Leicester, UK
  2. 2 Paediatric Emergency Department, Cardiff and Vale University Healthboard, Cardiff, UK
  3. 3 Paediatric Emergency Department, Leicester Royal Infirmary, Leicester, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Christopher Dadnam, Paediatric Emergency Department, Leicester Royal Infirmary, Leicester LE2 7DX, UK; chmdadnam{at}


Major incidents are rare but require a large amount of preparation, co-ordination and communication across different emergency services and specialities. This ensures that casualties are efficiently managed within the constraints of limited clinical resources. This article aims to provide a brief understanding of what constitutes as a major incident, how it is declared and the chain of command in communication and action, focusing specifically on the paediatric process. It also aims to highlight important considerations that could potentially be missed (eg, the mental health impact, forensic evidence and so on).

  • Paediatric Emergency Medicine
  • Paediatrics
  • Child Health Services

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  • Correction notice This article has been updated since it was first published. Table 2 and boxes 1 and 2 have been moved closer to their citations.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.