Ep #34: To Block or Not to Block: The Story Behind the Block Buddy App

Peripheral nerve blocks are a growing type of regional anesthesia and there’s an app out there that serves as a reference guide for CRNAs. We brought on Block Buddy co-founders Scott Urigel and Jeff Molter to find out how the idea was developed and how it’s benefiting the industry.

On This Episode:

To block or not to block? That is the question we’re diving into for this episode of Beyond the Mask.

Peripheral nerve blocks are the focus today as we had the opportunity to spend some time talking with Scott Urigel and Jeff Molter. These two gentlemen are the creators of the Block Buddy app, which has become a resourceful tool for CRNAs across the country that regularly use these blocks.

The app was developed about five years ago and has continued to evolve into the extensive resource that it is today. The product provides illustrations, videos, and lessons for ultrasound-guided peripheral nerve blocks and includes more than 20 different types of blocks.

We spent time with Urigel and Molter finding out how the idea came about and how much time and work has gone into creating an app like this. They both had to work through a steep learning curve to get to this point, but now they offer conferences and programs to help CRNAs improve their skills.

They great thing about this skill is there’s an opportunity for CRNAs to grow their career and benefit financially by learning and mastering these blocks. That might not have been the initial vision for Block Buddy, but that’s how far it has come in such a short time.

That’s all part of this episode of Beyond the Mask and we’ve highlighted the main topics below to help you navigate the show.

1:38 – To Block or Not to Block: That is the question

2:00 – Introducing our guests: Scott Urigel and Jeff Molter.

2:26 – Who are our guests today?

4:05 – How difficult was it to develop the Block Buddy app?

6:39 – How long did the process take?

8:57 – The app has evolved quite a bit since it was first published.

9:37 – How are CRNAs utilizing blocks now?

10:30 – What we’ve been seeing from large anesthesia companies in Ohio.

12:12 – There’s always a learning curve and peripheral nerve blocks are no different.

13:53 – When we first started doing it, we thought it was the worst idea.

15:18 – Some locations nationwide have limitations on blocks in our practice.

17:03 – Block Buddy is hosting its own conferences and programs now.

20:30 – Is there a financial opportunity for CRNAs?

22:08 – How can a CRNA that learns this skill go out and benefit from it?

24:38 – Congratulating Scott for a great award he just won.

25:17 – Jeff won Ohio CRNA of the Year.

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