To consider the requirements for the education of paramedics in the future it is appropriate to consider the scope of practice for paramedics in the future and the changing public perceptions of paramedics. I perceive the major impacts on paramedic services in the future to be; • Evidence based medicine (EBM) • Research • Defensive medicine • Primary care • Paramedic practitioners
The chosen education model needs to provide sufficient education that the paramedic is able to be a part of all of the processes listed above. Specifically in relation to the current model the following improvements are required for undergraduate education; • Greater knowledge of anatomy • Greater knowledge of physiology • Greater knowledge of pathophysiology of a greater number of diseases • Greater knowledge of pharmacology • Greater knowledge and understanding of the methods and benefits of research • Improved physical patient assessment skills • Greater attention to the concepts of primary care, social services, and referral to providers outside of the hospital system
By embracing the concepts of lifelong learning sponsored by the Australian National Training Authority (ANTA) and making all aspects of ambulance education modular to fit within the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) ambulance authorities provide maximum scope and opportunity. The system chosen should allow all of the ANTA recommendations towards Recognition of Current Competency (RCC) and also Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).
A basic framework to accommodate the likely skills and responsibilities of paramedics in the future is discussed.
"“Where does paramedic education go from here? Time to get serious about our education”,"
Journal of Emergency Primary Health Care:
3, Article 36.
Available at: http://ro.ecu.edu.au/jephc/vol1/iss3/36