An evaluation of emergency medical technicians' ability to use manual ventilation devices

Ann Emerg Med. 1983 Dec;12(12):765-8. doi: 10.1016/s0196-0644(83)80254-6.


Three hundred twenty emergency medical technicians (EMTs) were tested for their ability to ventilate a precalibrated Recording Resusci-Annie (Laerdal Medical Corporation) using both a bag-valve-mask and a pocket mask. More than 50% of the EMTs were not capable of ventilating to the minimum standard using a bag-valve-mask. The study demonstrates that the pocket mask method is far superior to the bag-valve-mask method. If these experimental results are confirmed by clinical findings, we recommend that future educational courses teach the bag-valve-mask as a four-hand/two-person skill, with one rescuer squeezing the bag with both hands and the second rescuer maintaining hyperextension.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Allied Health Personnel / education*
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Manikins
  • Respiration, Artificial / methods
  • Resuscitation / methods*