That was the word used by Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) CEO Scott Livingstone when asked to describe the medical community’s role in the Broncos bus tragedy.
Wahba was airlifted to Nipawin Hospital by STARS air ambulance on Friday night and worked alongside first responders all night.
“I can attest as a physician who was on scene with STARS… it was truly a team effort. It was a province-wide, team effort,” he said while holding back tears.
“My heart is with my colleagues… all the healthcare providers who are working so hard to attend to those who are suffering.”
Like many others, Wahba worked through the night Friday to assist in the rescue efforts and couldn’t say enough about the work being done by SHA employees and those affected by the tragedy.
“This isn’t about me, this is about the care providers, the families, the patients,” he said. “I never saw it turn to chaos.”
Wahba said he’s been left stunned by the response to the tragedy.
“Scott (Livingstone) and I were talking about this earlier today,” Wahba said. “I think the biggest thing that’s amazed me from this tragedy is exactly that — this sense of community and how everyone just dropped everything and came together.”
“Everybody knew what their role was and everybody did their role and that’s why the system response worked in the way that it did.”
Extremely rare Code Orange declared
Livingstone couldn’t sugarcoat the uncharted territory the province found itself in after the crash.
He said no amount of training could truly make healthcare workers ready for such an , there is nothing in place for an event like this.
“I’m not sure we can do anything to prepare a human being for what has happened in this province on Friday night,” Livingstone said before adding that mental health supports are in place for SHA workers.
“We have not seen a mass casualty of this nature in the province in my 30 years of working in health care. It is one of the most significant events ever.”
A Code Orange —the protocol for a large number of patients arriving at the same time— was declared at RUH in the moments after the crash.
Wahba said that means calling in more nurses, operating room staff, doctors and support staff to move patients currently at the hospital and prepare for the group en route.
A co-ordinated team was called in to set up a command centre and directs patients to a specific team.
Neither Livingstone or Wahba could recall if or when a Code Orange was ever previously declared in the province.