Dr. Roberto Barcala-Furelos







Professor and Head of REMOSS Research Group. Lifesaving college professor(University of Vigo)

IDRA co-founder

Coordinator of the lifesaving work group of the Spanish Society of Emergency and Emergency Medicine (SEMES)



Dr. Barcala-Furelos started working professionally as a lifeguard at 19 years of age (previously he was a volunteer), and since then he has been linked to professional lifeguarding all my life, now as a professor at the University. He teaches lifesaving and uses his training / experience as a physical educator, lifeguard and nurse to improve the skills of my students. He believes that an important mission is to leave our society a better world, and fighting drowning is a challenge. From the MC, drowning incidents can be approached in a global way. Together – medical doctors, nurses, paramedics and lifeguards – we can share and create the best scientific evidence. This is our mission.


Selected Publications


Barcala-Furelos R, Abelairas-Gomez C, Romo-Perez V, Palacios-Aguilar J. Effect of physical fatigue on the quality CPR: a water rescue study of lifeguards: physical fatigue and quality CPR in a water rescue. Am J Emerg Med. 2013 Mar;31(3):473–7.


Barcala-Furelos R, Szpilman D, Palacios-Aguilar J, Costas-Veiga J, Abelairas-Gomez C, Bores-Cerezal A, et al. Assessing the efficacy of rescue equipment in lifeguard resuscitation efforts for drowning. Am J Emerg Med. 2016 Mar;34(3):480–5.


Barcala-Furelos R, Abelairas-Gómez C, Alonso-Calvete A, Cano-Noguera F, Carballo-Fazanes A, Martínez-Isasi S, et al. Safe On-Boat Resuscitation by Lifeguards in COVID-19 Era: A Pilot Study Comparing Three Sets of Personal Protective Equipment. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2021 Apr;36(2):163–9.


Barcala-Furelos R, Abelairas-Gomez C, Palacios-Aguilar J, Rey E, Costas-Veiga J, Lopez-Garcia S, et al. Can surf-lifeguards perform a quality cardiopulmonary resuscitation sailing on a lifeboat? A quasi-experimental study. Emerg Med J. 2017 Jun;34(6):370–5.


Barcala-Furelos R, Arca-Bustelo Á, Palacios-Aguilar J, Rodríguez-Núñez A. Quality of cardiopulmonary resuscitation by lifeguards on a small inflatable boat. Resuscitation. 2015 May;90:e1-2.


Barcala-Furelos R, Szpilman D, Abelairas-Gómez C, Alonso-Calvete A, Domínguez-Graña M, Martínez-Isasi S, et al. Plastic blanket drowning kit: A protection barrier to immediate resuscitation at the beach in the Covid-19 era. A pilot study. Am J Emerg Med. 2020 Nov;38(11):2395–9.


Barcala-Furelos R, Aranda-García S, Abelairas-Gómez C, Martínez-Isasi S, López-Mesa F, Oleagordia-Aguirre A, et al. [Occupational health recommendations for lifeguards in aquatic emergencies in the Covid-19 era: prevention, rescue and resuscitation.]. Rev Esp Salud Publica. 2020 Jun 30;94.


Barcala-Furelos R, González-Represas A, Rey E, Martínez-Rodríguez A, Kalén A, Marques O, et al. Is Low-Frequency Electrical Stimulation a Tool for Recovery after a Water Rescue? A Cross-Over Study with Lifeguards. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Aug 12;17(16).


Barcala-Furelos R, Carbia-Rodríguez P, Peixoto-Pino L, Abelairas-Gómez C, Rodríguez-Núñez A. Implantación de programas educativos para prevenir ahogamientos. ¿Qué se puede hacer desde la escuela infantil? Medicina Intensiva. 2019 Apr 1;43(3):180–2.


Barcala-Furelos R, Abelairas-Gomez C, Romo-Perez V, Palacios-Aguilar J. Influence of Automatic Compression Device and Water Rescue Equipment in Quality Lifesaving and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. Hong Kong Journal of Emergency Medicine. 2014 Sep;21(5):291–9.


Barcala-Furelos R, Abelairas-Gomez C, Aranda-García S, Lorenzo-Martínez M, Martínez-Isasi S, Durán-Álvarez C, et al. Is it feasible “scoop and run while playing” resuscitation on a Rescue Water Craft? A randomized simulation study with lifeguards. The American Journal of Emergency Medicine [Internet]. 2019 Nov 18 [cited 2020 Jan 2];0(0). Available from: https://www.ajemjournal.com/article/S0735-6757(19)30738-7/abstract


Bierens J, Abelairas-Gomez C, Barcala Furelos R, Beerman S, Claesson A, Dunne C, et al. Resuscitation and emergency care in drowning: A scoping review. Resuscitation. 2021 Feb 4


Barcala-Furelos R, Graham D, Abelairas-Gómez C, Rodríguez-Núñez A. Lay-rescuers in drowning incidents: A scoping review. Am J Emerg Med. 2021 Jan 31;44:38–44.