Mass Casualty Incident Commander Decision-Making Models: Novice vs. Expert Decision Making

Omer Perry, Avishay Goldberg, Eli Jaffe, Yuval Bitan

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Introduction: Managing a mass-casualty incident (MCI) challenges commanders in the pre-hospital phase. Exploring the differences between the decision-making processes of novice and expert commanders can reveal how to improve training. This study aims to compare the decision-making processes between paramedic students and veteran paramedics. Methods: Data from eight MCI field simulations of paramedic students with no experience, and one simulation of a veteran paramedic were collected. Results: In the first phase of the simulation, both the students and the veteran paramedic followed the MCI protocol. From the second phase, the paramedic students mostly responded to received cues, while the veteran paramedic initiated actions without preliminary cues. Discussion: The veteran paramedic initiates actions and utilizes "considered" decision-making process earlier than the students, that frequently acted in response to cues. Although these results are based on a small sample, this study indicates a difference between novice and expert commanders’ decision-making processes.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)2329-2334
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2023
Event67th International Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, HFES 2023 - Columbia, United States
Duration: 23 Oct 202327 Oct 2023


  • Decision Making
  • Dual Process Model
  • Incident Commander
  • Mass-Casualty Incident

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics


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