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The Vortex Approach



upper airway lifelines

Think of each of these tools as an upper airway “lifeline” each capable of delivering life-saving oxygen to your patient during an airway emergency. .


The green zone

Use your airway lifelines to keep your patient in the green zone. The place on the vortex where you’re delivering adequate oxygenation. Here you have time to think, to plan, to prepare for your next move. This is where you want to be.


not an algorithm

The Vortex is not an algorithm, it’s described by its creator Nicholas Chrimes as a high acuity tool designed to work at the bedside during a rapidly evolving airway emergency. While that flow chart may be good while studying, the high acuity tool is designed with human factors in mind, like the need for rapid recall under stress and an effective shared mental model.


dive deeper

Have 10 minutes to sit and learn more about the details (we highly recommend it) then watch this video.

9:38 min
visit the vortex approach website


The Vortex Approach In Action

Watch this great simulation of the VORTEX APPROACH in action and see how it can be used to prioritize oxygenation.

👆Scan Code or Click HERE to go 🔗


mobile resource

Download the Vortex Training App to your phone. Use it for self-practice and for in person team training. ✋ 🤔


the bottom line

  • Your goal is to prioritize oxygenation and keep your patient in the “green zone”
  • All three upper airway lifelines are effective at delivering lifesaving oxygen
  • Learning how to use your three upper airway lifelines together makes them more powerful
  • Build a shared mental model using the Vortex Approach


For in person learners, locate any of the posters below within the installation to continue your training. Then snap the QR codes embedded within them to access the learning space. Look for the ✋emoji for integrated hands on training opportunities.

The digital space

For when you can’t be with us in person, or you want to see the full digital learning space for this topic you can always join us here.

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