WHY NAME IT, IF YOU CAN’T SURPASS IT? How African EM Geeks made #FOAMed history.

 WHY NAME IT, IF YOU CAN’T SURPASS IT? How African EM Geeks made #FOAMed history.

1280 660 Willem Stassen

As the excitement mounts for #smaccDUB that started this week, a similar initiative from the Southern-most tip of Africa bravely took the Twitterverse by storm in December 2015 with over 1.1 million impressions.  EPIC!,  fashioned after the SMACC (Social Media and Critical Care) innovation  held on the 12th of December 2015 was created with the intention of sharing the dynamic and exciting world of #FOAMed with the Netcare Education Faculty of Emergency and Critical Care regulars and the world.

SMACC is described as the “most exciting innovation in critical care education” and brings all major specialties in critical care together in an interactive face-to-face and online learning conference that allows for delegates to rub shoulders with some of the biggest names in international web-education and FOAMed. Kayleigh Lachenicht (@FECCEPIC), from the organising team, explains further.

This “conference with a difference” aimed at getting delegates out of their seats and into action. For many, EPIC! was the first taste of how accessible free medical education resourcEpic 7es are while others to up the challenge to showcase their talents in many physical and mental tasks.

Thumping techno tunes emanated from the pitch-dark Club EPIC! containing a gauntlet of medical  and rescue obstacles that had to be circumvented in the midst of strobe lights and smoke. The rest of the day was marked by impromptu patient interactions, kicking off with a prolonged resuscitation of Rescue Rodney, bringing the ethics of resuscitation and termination of care to the fore. Similarly, simulation-based training was used to establish current teaching in the management of haemorrhagic shock. In true SMACC-esque style, delegates were also frustrated by the vomit-comet in the airway room.

Epic 3Dynamic international and local speakers such as Minh Le Cong (@ketaminh), @drlaragoldstein and @docmikewells were also featured. Aspects of critical appraisal and evidence-based medicine were also touched on in a research session.

The FOAMed community did not disappoint and Periscope was flooded with videos of the various speakers and event, allowing interaction from all over the globe. Research posters were on show for interested parties, and a number of exhibitors were able to showcase their latest products for use. A total of 748 Twitter posts reached over  57 000 people around the globe with  over 1.1 million impressions of these posts on Twitter.

Thanks to the bravery of African EM enthusiasts and FOAMed this “little” conference managed to take the title of first #FOAMed event held on African soil and turned out to be even more EPIC! than anyone could have predicted!


As with any good conference, a sequel cometh! EPIC  Reloaded, October 2016. Contact epicfecc@gmail.com for more information, or simply follow #feccEPIC.