This study aimed to examine the quality of published paramedic scoping reviews against pre-existing frameworks to assess the extent to which they fulfil the requirements of this methodological approach. Subsequently, recommendations will be presented regarding improvements for future paramedic scoping reviews.
A scoping review was conducted guided by the PRISMA Extension for Scoping Reviews. A literature search was performed in six electronic databases as well as the grey literature to identify previous scoping reviews that focussed on paramedic or emergency medical service personnel. Relevant data were extracted from included articles and presented in narrative and tabular formats.
The literature search initially identified 475 articles, of which 20 remained after title/abstract and full-text screening. There was a general increase in the number of studies published over time, the majority of articles (80%) had conducted their scoping review utilising published frameworks, and 75% of first authors were paramedics. Although many areas of these reports comply with published guidelines, there was an overall lack of consistency in the specific information included, the level of detail of that information, and the location of information within the reports.
All paramedic scoping studies should be reported with the use of a published framework to enable standardisation in the reporting, thus facilitating understanding, reproducibility, and utility. The PRISMA Extension for Scoping Reviews provides a checklist and thorough explanations of each step in the reporting process and is recommended for use with all future paramedic scoping reviews.
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