At a conference recently I spoke with a group about things (knowledge, skills, abilities, attributes) needed by EMS providers but either not typically taught, or not adequately taught in paramedic schools (or EMT, or whathaveyou). What do you think? Are these accurate? Are there others?
1. Wellness/fitness (not just lecture, but active; PT etc.) - there is nothing in the typical paramedic program to develop an adequate level of fitness to perform essential job tasks. "PT" is typically not part of the program (as it is in most fire and police training programs).
2. Personal defensive tactics, situational awareness - most programs don't train their students how to respond if attacked, or how to recognize and avoid dangerous situations.
3. Diffusing/negotiating skills - ties to above, but is actually much larger. Managing a rowdy crowd without help. "Verbal judo" skills and whathaveyou.
4. Grief management (post-code, etc.) - are EMS people adequately trained to deal with families, particularly as we pronounce more and more people in the field. I'd expand this even further - how well are we equipped, mentally, physically, and equipment-wise, to deal with the wide spectrum of mental illness?
5. Driving/vehicle management - this seems to be taking a powder in many EMT and paramedic schools, being "left to the employer." Same with "patient handling" such as stair chair, stretcher, bariatrics, etc. Funny how the two things we don on every call (driving and patient handling) seem to be low priority.....
6. Patient care during access and extrication (working in hazardous environments). Do we teach our new EMTs and medics how to safely operate in the "rescue" environments? Can they provide patient care while the patient is being removed from a crumbled auto, while stuck in a confined space, etc.? Last week seven fire-EMS folk were overcome by CO when they kept walking in to a scene - do we lack sufficient awareness?
There's got to be more --- chime in please!
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Research methods and technical writing. Paramedic students should critically analyze studies and write papers about them.
I very, very, very strongly agree with this.
Robert Sullivan said:Research methods and technical writing. Paramedic students should critically analyze studies and write papers about them.