The fundamental goals of airway management are oxygenation and ventilation. The optimal method by which this can be achieved will depend on the scenario, which includes patient, provider and other contextual considerations.
ABCs priorities of resuscitation do not necessarily progress in a linear, in-series fashion and while airway management will always be required early, this may or may not involve early endotracheal intubation.
The indications for intubation are to (a) obtain and maintain the airway, (b) correctabnormalities of gas exchange (c) protect the airway, and (d) secure the airway early in the face of predicted clinical deterioration.
These indications often represent varying levels of acuity and decisions to intubate should consider a risk-benefit assessment of proceeding with this intervention.