Paramedics as the wider public health workforce: A survey of current paramedic public health practice, perceived barriers and future opportunities
PHE ePoster Library. Tang S. Sep 12, 2019; 274382; 186
Mr. Sammer Tang
Mr. Sammer Tang
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Abstract
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Abstract BackgroundThe aim of this survey was to develop a better understanding of the paramedics' attitudes towards public health and their current practice. MethodsOnline questionnaire was made available to ambulance clinicians for 6 weeks in late 2018.
Results
There were 235 responses including respondents from all 4 home countries.Majority of respondents (87%) agree that predicting and preventing ill health is part of their role. The length of service/ years of experience did not have a significant impact on the level of agreement.Health Promotion is being deemed as an activity that is 'different from standard practice' by over half of respondents (55%). However, given some practice examples, over 90% reported that they already incorporate health improvement activities into their daily practice highlighting that there are different perceptions within the Paramedic profession on what constitute public health activities.Nearly half of respondents (42%) received no training in the delivery of healthy conversations/health promotion but that would like to receive the training.Lack of follow up opportunity; inadequate skills or knowledge to support the patient; inadequate time to support the patient and not regarded as a priority by employers were the most commonly perceived barriers for the delivery of healthy conversations.
Conclusion
Paramedics are clearly part of the wider public health workforce. This survey highlights the potential amongst Paramedics in the delivery of healthy conversations and the impacts on UK public health priorities, the perceived barriers and opportunities for the increase the contribution to health promotion and public health. External funding details
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