Australasian Journal of Paramedicine <p style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: medium;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: medium;">The Australasian Journal of Paramedicine (the AJP) is the official open access, peer-reviewed, international journal of the Australasian College of Paramedicine (formerly Paramedics Australasia), the peak professional body representing paramedics throughout Australasia. </span></span></p> <p style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: medium;"> </span></p> <p style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: medium;">The AJP aims to advance and promote the science of pre-hospital care research, management, education, clinical practice, policy and service delivery, as well as provide a forum to respond to the professional interests of the multidisciplinary pre-hospital care community.</span></p> <p style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"><span style="font-family: Times New Roman; font-size: medium;"> </span></p> <p style="margin: 0cm 0cm 0pt;"> </p> en-US (Lauren Daws) (Lauren Daws) Sun, 03 Jan 2021 21:21:40 -0800 OJS 60 Australasian College of Paramedicine Student Conference (StuCon 2021) Abstracts - Oral and Poster Presentations <p>These are the conference abstracts for oral and poster presentations at the Australasian College of Paramedicine Student Conference (StuCon 2021) Abstracts, Virtual online, Australia, 30th July 2021</p> Liam Bruton Copyright (c) 2021 Liam Bruton Thu, 19 Aug 2021 00:00:00 -0700 Mentor or tormentor? A commentary on the fractured role of mentoring in paramedicine <p>The relatively quick evolution of paramedicine and the inevitable ‘growing pains’ associated with an evolving profession has seen mentoring and the role of the mentor become clouded in confusion, ineffective education and a lack of specific research. Paramedicine’s recent development as a registered profession has also seen mentoring explicitly outlined as being a capability expected of all registered paramedics. However, the paramedic-mentoring model in Australia seems to have been mostly left up to the individual paramedic to develop in isolation from adequate training and mentoring themselves. If paramedicine is to continue its evolution as a legitimate healthcare profession, the quality of clinical mentoring must be acknowledged as a significant factor by higher education institutions, and the public and private services who employ paramedics, and nurtured accordingly.</p> Andrew Bell, Steve Whitfield Copyright (c) 2021 Andrew Bell, Steve Whitfield Sun, 10 Oct 2021 00:00:00 -0700 Describing a 12-hour ambulance shift during a second wave of COVID-19 in London <p>The coronavirus disease (COVID-19), caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, has strained international healthcare systems, including ambulance availability. Ambulance officers and paramedics are at the frontline of this pandemic and are therefore particularly exposed. Under normal operational circumstances, ambulance delivery is challenging; the effects of COVID-19 have exacerbated both the delivery of services and the stress placed on paramedics.</p> <p>In this case report, we describe a 12-hour emergency ambulance dayshift in central London during the second wave city-wide lockdown. We also discuss the impact COVID-19 has on day-to-day operations and the strategies employed to reduce paramedic infection.</p> Alexandra Rengers, Emma Day, Steve Whitfield Copyright (c) 2021 Alexandra Rengers, Emma Day, Steve Whitfield Sun, 26 Sep 2021 00:00:00 -0700 Motivating factors influencing student paramedic choice of paramedicine as a career <h3>Introduction</h3> <p>This study aimed to identify and assess the factors, motivations and influences on undergraduate students’ choice of paramedicine for their studies and ultimately a career in paramedicine.</p> <h3>Methods</h3> <p>A survey was available to 205 first-year Bachelor of Paramedic Science students to assess background, motivational factors and influences on choosing their undergraduate studies.</p> <h3>Results</h3> <p>The response rate to an online survey distributed to 205 students yielded an almost 25% response rate (n=51). Altruistic factors were the main reason students chose to study for a degree in paramedic science and ultimately a career in paramedicine. Although essential, extrinsic, sociodemographic and interpersonal factors were less motivating factors. Despite other research suggesting media coverage leads to increased student enrolments, the media coverage of paramedics as frontline health professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic and the ‘lights and sirens’ effect of ambulance/paramedic reality television shows as influences were not highly regarded.</p> <h3>Conclusion</h3> <p>The altruistic factors influencing career choices in paramedicine are generally similar across the healthcare industry. In this review, the motivating nature of extrinsic, interpersonal and sociodemographic factors was generally inconclusive. However, these factors may well apply to a university’s initial recruitment strategy and as a factor for ambulance services to consider when identifying the motivating factor of a student paramedic to join the workforce.</p> Anthony Weber, Shannon Delport, Andrew Hodgetts Copyright (c) 2021 Anthony Weber, Shannon Delport, Andrew Hodgetts Thu, 30 Sep 2021 00:00:00 -0700 The demographic and clinical practice profile of Australian remote and industrial paramedics: Findings from a workforce survey <p><strong>Introduction</strong><br />A large workforce is employed in remote environments in the Australian mining and fuel sectors. Whereas paramedics are increasingly assuming roles as healthcare providers in these locations, little is known about industrial paramedic practice. The aim of this exploratory study was to better understand the demographics, education, clinical practice and work environment of the Australian paramedic workforce in remote and industrial settings to inform future research and education for the emerging specialty.</p> <p><strong>Methods</strong> <br />Web-based respondent driven network sampling was used to recruit remote and industrial paramedics in this cross-sectional descriptive study. A self-administered questionnaire elicited responses (n=111) about participant demographics, work environment, initial and continuing education, and clinical scope of practice.</p> <p><strong>Results</strong><br />Paramedic participants working in remote and industrial settings are predominately male (86.5%) with the majority aged 35 to 44 years (38.7%). Their job titles range widely and include paramedic, intensive care paramedic, industrial, mine and offshore paramedics. Participants report an average of 15.4 years of total healthcare experience and working in the remote or industrial health sector for a mean of 7.1 years, primarily in Western Australia (34.2%). These paramedics often engage in continuing education, with 45% studying at a vocational or tertiary institution at the time of the survey. Most respondents (63.9%) describe their employment as directly or indirectly related to the natural resource sector and 75.7% have experience in remote settings such as camps, mining sites, offshore platforms, vessels or small communities. Most practitioners (59.5%) work in a full-time capacity and can perform core paramedic skills including intravenous cannulation, 12-lead electrocardiogram interpretation, chest needle decompression and restricted drug administration. Additionally, more than 40% of those actively working in the sector report having endotracheal intubation and intraosseous access in their scope of practice. They also administer immunisations, antibiotics and other prescription medications, manage chronic diseases, and perform low acuity skills typically included in a community paramedic role.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion</strong><br />This workforce survey is the first of its kind designed to gain a broader understanding of the paramedic practitioners who work in remote and industrial settings and the characteristics of their work environment. Key areas highlighted by this study serve to inform professional regulators, educators and employers with respect to the skills that remote and industrial paramedics perform and the education that is required to support the evolving specialised practice.</p> Joseph James Acker, Ms Tania Johnston Copyright (c) 2021 Joseph James Acker, Ms Tania Johnston Wed, 18 Aug 2021 00:00:00 -0700 Towards a safer and more efficient neonatal transfer system in South Africa: A qualitative inquiry with advanced life support paramedics <p><strong>Introduction</strong></p> <p>The inter-healthcare transfer of the critically ill neonate is a critical aspect of larger neonatal intensive care, as it influences the safe transport of neonates from the receiving to the referring hospital. It is crucial then that the transfer process be safe and efficient so as not to compromise the already fragile condition of the neonate. The aim of the study was to understand the challenges advanced life support (ALS) paramedics face during neonatal transfers and to understand how the process could be made safer and more efficient. The objectives related to understanding the transfer process, the challenges linked to the critically ill neonate and the difficulties associated with the ambulance vehicle and equipment.</p> <p><strong>Methods</strong></p> <p>Using a qualitative research approach we sought the views of ALS paramedics at the forefront of transfers nationally. In-depth interviews were held with eight paramedics in KwaZulu-Natal and four focus group discussions with ALS paramedics in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng, Free State and the Western Cape in South Africa. A total of 35 ALS paramedics were involved in these group discussions.</p> <p><strong>Results</strong></p> <p>The study uncovered several challenges that paramedics face related to poor organisational preparation for transfer of the critically ill neonate, and other crucial issues that compromise the transfer such as inadequate or defective equipment.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion</strong></p> <p>There is a need for greater scrutiny of the transfer process and a commitment from stakeholders to begin addressing the challenges confronting the safe transfer of critically ill neonates. </p> Pradeep Ashokcoomar, Raisuyah Bhagwan Copyright (c) 2021 Pradeep Ashokcoomar, Raisuyah Bhagwan Tue, 18 May 2021 00:00:00 -0700 Advanced care or advanced life support – what are we providing? <p>The field of paramedicine has undergone significant change and modernisation over the past 50 years. Presently there are no consistent terms or lexicon used across the profession to describe different levels of advanced practice. This inconsistency risks creating confusion as the professionalisation of paramedic practice continues. As well, many empirical studies support the claim that communication and the importance of managing language actively plays a crucial role in supporting change and in shaping the new paradigm. Therefore, the way one uses communication, and the deliberate choice of words to describe advance practice, will support change in the desired direction.</p> <p>This article explores these terms and their attendant influences on perceptions of practice to argue for change towards the standardised use of the term ‘advanced care paramedic’ across the Anglo-American paramedic system. </p> <p> </p> Timothy Makrides, Leon Baranowski, Lucas` Hawkes-Frost, Jennie Helmer Copyright (c) 2021 Timothy Makrides, Leon Baranowski, Lucas` Hawkes-Frost, Jennie Helmer Tue, 13 Jul 2021 00:00:00 -0700 Paediatric Life Support by Advanced Paediatric Life Support, Australia: course review <p>The Advanced Paediatric Life Support, Australia Paediatric Life Support course is designed to improve outcomes for critically ill and injured paediatrics treated by healthcare professionals. It is comprised of pre-reading, online learning and a one-day face-to-face session that covers basic life support, airway management, cardiac rhythm recognition and defibrillation, intraosseous access and recognition of the seriously injured and ill child. This paper reviews the course and concludes that it should be considered as part of the continuing professional development requirements for paramedics.</p> Shannon Macfarlane, James Pearce Copyright (c) 2021 Shannon Macfarlane, James Pearce Wed, 02 Jun 2021 00:00:00 -0700 The preparedness of emergency care providers to deal with death, dying and bereavement in the pre-hospital setting in Dubai <p><strong>Introduction</strong></p> <p>This study sought to investigate how prepared emergency care providers are to deal with death, dying and bereavement in the pre-hospital setting in Dubai, and to make recommendations related to such events.</p> <p><strong>Methods</strong></p> <p>A quantitative descriptive prospective design was utilised. Data was collected using an online self-report questionnaire sent to all operational emergency care providers in the Dubai Corporation of Ambulance Services. The data was analysed using the IBM Statistical Package for Social Sciences version 25.0.</p> <p><strong>Results</strong></p> <p>Nearly 65% of participants (n=316) reported that they had not received any formal education or training on death, dying and bereavement. Those that did, reported that the training was conducted mainly by nursing (25.9%; n=124) and paramedic (13.6%; n=65) instructors. One-quarter of participants (25.4%; n=126) reported experiencing intrusive symptoms such as sleep loss, nightmares and missing work as a result of a work-related death or dying incident, but only 4.1% (n=20) had received professional counselling.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion</strong></p> <p>This study found that emergency care providers are underprepared to deal with death, dying and bereavement. A comprehensive death education program encompassing the unique challenges that emergency and pre-hospital setting presents should be implemented to reduce emotional anxiety and help emergency care providers cope better with death, and decrease abnormal grief reactions of the bereft. Abnormal grief reactions can include restlessness, searching for the lost person and disrupted autonomic nervous system functions.</p> Reon Conning, Raveen Naidoo, Raisuyah Bhagwan Copyright (c) 2021 Reon Conning, Raveen Naidoo, Raisuyah Bhagwan Thu, 02 Sep 2021 00:00:00 -0700 ‘Watson’ the wellness dog: Impact of a wellness dog on emotional wellbeing in undergraduate paramedicine students <p><strong>Introduction</strong></p> <p>University life can be daunting, especially for those transferring directly from high school. Previous research has found higher education students are at increased risk of mental health issues than the general population. Paramedic students have the usual concerns regarding study, in addition to the potential to be exposed to confronting emergency medical situations during clinical placements. The study aim was to examine whether the presence of a wellness dog had any impact on paramedicine undergraduate students self-reported emotional wellbeing.</p> <p><strong>Methods</strong></p> <p>A wellness dog (named ‘Watson’) was available on alternating weeks for 15 minutes at the beginning of lectures for three individual units. Each unit corresponded to a different year group of paramedic undergraduate students. A brief emotional experience scale was completed at the beginning of each lecture. Comparisons were made between Watson being present versus absent to gauge differences in students’ emotional wellness. Focus groups were run at the end of semester to further explore perceptions of Watson’s impact on emotional wellbeing.</p> <p><strong>Results</strong></p> <p>A total of 89 participants were included in the study. Participant emotional wellbeing was found to be higher on ‘Watson present’ weeks compared to ‘Watson absent’ weeks (p&lt;0.001). Focus group data strongly supported Watson’s presence in clinical and non-clinical classes, improving self-reported wellbeing and cohort connectivity.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion</strong></p> <p>The presence of a wellness dog appears to have a beneficial impact on undergraduate paramedic students’ emotional wellbeing. Further research is required to explore whether the presence of a wellness dog affects physiological indicators of stress, attrition rates and class attendance.</p> Michella Hill, Brennen Mills, Shane Rogers, Leanne Vance, Peggy Dykstra, Lisa Holmes Copyright (c) 2021 Michella Hill, Brennen Mills, Shane Rogers, Leanne Vance, Peggy Dykstra, Lisa Holmes Thu, 22 Jul 2021 00:00:00 -0700