AbstractIn Australia, western medicine and the majority of allied healthcare professions are regulated via statutory regulation. For most of these allied healthcare professions, education has moved into the higher education (HE) sector and universities. The profession of paramedics is undergoing a transition in terms of scope of practice, and in particular education, moving from a post-employment model characterised by on-the-job training, to a pre-employment model, essentially full time university-based Bachelor degree education, similar to the change that occurred in nursing in Australia many years ago. How to produce work-ready graduates in the healthcare professions is of concern for educators and professional associations. Research into work-readiness in several healthcare fields has yielded important information that may be utilised by paramedic and other allied healthcare educators to improve courses. This paper discusses issues of transition of HE healthcare graduates into the workforce that need to be considered by educators, with a particular focus on the profession of paramedics in Australia. It also summarises key findings of research into work-readiness in a range of healthcare professions.
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