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  • The views, opinions and decision-making of UK-based paramedics on the use of pre-hospital 12-lead electrocardiograms in acute stroke patients: a qualitative interview study

    Munro, Scott; Cooke, Debbie; Holah, Janet; Quinn, Tom (2023-12-01)
    Introduction: A qualitative exploration into the views, opinions and decision-making of paramedics involved in undertaking pre-hospital 12-lead electrocardiograms (PHECGs) for stroke patients was undertaken, in order to gain a deeper understanding of the clinical and occupational context that the paramedics work within, the acceptability of the paramedics in using PHECGs for stroke patients and the consequences and influences of their decision-making. Methods: Data were collected via semi-structured interviews and analysed using the framework method, with the underpinning theoretical framework of cognitive continuum theory. A purposive sample of 14 paramedics was recruited and interviewed. Results: Five themes were generated from the analysis of the interviews: (1) ‘time is brain’: minimising delays and rapid transport to definitive care; (2) barriers and facilitators to undertaking PHECGs for stroke patients; (3) recognising and gaining cues; (4) maintaining patient dignity, self-protection and fully informed consent; and (5) education, experience and engagement with evidence. Conclusion: The study showed mixed views on the usefulness of PHECGs, but all participants agreed that PHECGs should not cause additional delays. Paramedic decision-making on recording PHECGs relies on intuitive and quasi-rational cognitive modes, and requires a number of clinical, logistical and ethical considerations. The findings suggest careful consideration is needed of the benefits and potential drawbacks of incorporating PHECGs into pre-hospital stroke care. Abstract published with permission.
  • Route of drug administration in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest: A protocol for a randomised controlled trial (PARAMEDIC-3)

    Couper, Keith; Ji, Chen; Lall, Ranjit; Deakin, Charles; Fothergill, Rachael; Long, J.; Mason, James; Michelet, Felix; Nolan, Jerry; Nwankwo, Henry; et al. (2023-12-30)
  • Invited commentary: "Identifying traumatic significant haemorrhage is challenging for patient with low and intermediate risk, not when bleeding is obvious"

    Griggs, Joanne; Lyon, Richard; Sherriff, Martyn; Barrett, Jack; Wareham, Gary; Avest, Ewoud Ter (2023-12-12)
  • The experience of inter-disciplinary students undertaking cardiac arrest moulage training

    Bulford, Samuel; Houghton Budd, Silas; Pearson, Sam M.; Clear-Hill, Megan (BMC, 2016-06)
  • There are many ways to be a midwife: career pathways in midwifery

    Sarwar, Zainab; Pendleton, John; heys, Stephanie; Mansfield, Amanda; Kerslake, Dawn (2022-01)
  • A pre-hospital mixed methods systematic review protocol

    McManamny, Tegwyn; Ortega, Marishona; Munro, Scott; Jennings, Paul; Whitley, Gregory A. (2023-09-01)
    Introduction: Mixed methods research, a methodology entailing the integration of qualitative and quantitative data within a single study, offers researchers the ability to investigate complex processes and systems in health and healthcare. The collective strength gained through the data combination can provide an enhanced understanding of research problems, providing an ideal solution to understanding complex clinical issues in a range of settings. In pre-hospital practice, where often uncontrollable variables and environmental considerations increase healthcare complexity, mixed methods has emerged as a valuable approach to research. Aims: Given the exponential growth of pre-hospital mixed methods research since the publication of our first systematic review in 2014, we aim to provide an update. Our review will explore how mixed methods is utilised in pre-hospital research and identify what standards of reporting are achieved. Methods: This systematic review update will search MEDLINE, CINAHL Complete, Embase and Scopus bibliographic databases from 1 January 2012 to 15 March 2023, using an updated pre-hospital search strategy. Study screening will be performed in duplicate. Articles reported in English, explicitly stating the use of ‘mixed methods’ in the pre-hospital ambulance setting, including helicopter emergency medical services and community first-responder services, will be included. Data related to underpinning philosophy or theoretical framework, rationale for utilising mixed methods, background of the corresponding author, mode of data integration, model of publication and adherence to reporting standards, utilising the good reporting of a mixed methods study (GRAMMS) guidelines, will be extracted and analysed. All extracted data from study articles will be summarised in a table, allowing analysis of included studies against specified criteria. Abstract published with permission.
  • Defining a threshold above which an adult can be considered to frequently use ambulance services: a retrospective cross-sectional study of emergency calls to an ambulance service in England

    Scott, Jason; Pakpuhan, Eduwin; Marlow, Benjamin; Daxner, Nathan (The College of Paramedics, 2023-03-01)
    Objective: There is no empirical definition of adult frequent use of ambulance services. This study aimed to define a threshold, and utilise this to explore characteristics of people frequently using services. Methods: This was a retrospective cross-sectional study in a single ambulance service in England. Routinely collected, pseudo-anonymised call- and patient-level data were collected for two months (January and June 2019). Incidents, defined as independent episodes of care, were analysed using a zero-truncated Poisson regression model to determine a suitable frequent-use threshold, with comparisons subsequently made between frequent and non-frequent users. Results: A total of 101,356 incidents involving 83,994 patients were included in the analysis. Two potentially appropriate thresholds were identified: five incidents per month (A); and six incidents per month (B). Threshold A produced 3137 incidents from 205 patients, with five patients likely false-positive identifications. Threshold B produced 2217 incidents from 95 patients, with no false-positive identifications but 100 false-negatives compared to threshold A. Regardless of threshold, frequent users compared to non-frequent users had relatively reduced service use between 08:00 and 15:00, were younger and were more likely to receive lower-priority responses (all p < 0.001). We identified several chief complaints indicative of increased frequent use, including chest pain, psychiatric/suicide attempt and abdominal pains/problems. Conclusions: We suggest a threshold of five incidents per month, with recognition that a small number of patients may be incorrectly identified as using ambulance services frequently. The rationale for this choice is discussed. This threshold may be applicable in wider UK settings and could be used for the routine automated identification of people using ambulance services frequently. The identified characteristics can help inform interventions. Future research should examine applicability of this threshold in other UK ambulance services and countries where patterns and determinants of frequent ambulance use may differ. Abstract published with permission.
  • Trends in use of intraosseous and intravenous access in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest across English ambulance services: a registry-based, cohort study

    Vadeyar, Sharvari; Buckle, Alexandra; Hooper, Amy; Booth, Scott; Deakin, Charles; Fothergill, Rachael; Chen, Ji; Nolan, Jerry P; Brown, Martina; Cowley, Alan; et al. (2023-10)
  • Ambulance head injury guidelines: a-head of the game or in need of review?

    Barrett, Jack; Hipkiss, Kate (2024-01-02)
    Older adults with head injury are a challenging group of patients to the ambulance clinician. Older age, clinical frailty, comorbidities, anticoagulant and antiplatelet medications can contribute to these patients suffering a traumatic intracranial haemorrhage (tICH). Abstract published with permission
  • The Paramedic's guide to research: an introduction

    Whitehead, Ross (MAG Online, 2012-12-07)
    The article reviews the book "The Paramedic's Guide to Research: An Introduction," by P. Griffiths.
  • The SEE-IT Trial: emergency medical services Streaming Enabled Evaluation In Trauma: study protocol for an interventional feasibility randomised controlled trial

    Ollis, Lucie; Skene, Simon; Williams, Julia; Lyon, Richard; Taylor, Cath; SEE-IT Trial Group
    INTRODUCTION: Accurate and timely dispatch of emergency medical services (EMS) is vital due to limited resources and patients' risk of mortality and morbidity increasing with time. Currently, most UK emergency operations centres (EOCs) rely on audio calls and accurate descriptions of the incident and patients' injuries from lay 999 callers. If dispatchers in the EOCs could see the scene via live video streaming from the caller's smartphone, this may enhance their decision making and enable quicker and more accurate dispatch of EMS. The main aim of this feasibility randomised controlled trial (RCT) is to assess the feasibility of conducting a definitive RCT to assess the clinical and cost effectiveness of using live streaming to improve targeting of EMS. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: The SEE-IT Trial is a feasibility RCT with a nested process evaluation. The study also has two observational substudies: (1) in an EOC that routinely uses live streaming to assess the acceptability and feasibility of live streaming in a diverse inner-city population and (2) in an EOC that does not currently use live streaming to act as a comparator site regarding the psychological well-being of EOC staff using versus not using live streaming. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The study was approved by the Health Research Authority on 23 March 2022 (ref: 21/LO/0912), which included NHS Confidentiality Advisory Group approval received on 22 March 2022 (ref: 22/CAG/0003). This manuscript refers to V.0.8 of the protocol (7 November 2022). The trial is registered with the ISRCTN (ISRCTN11449333). The first participant was recruited on 18 June 2022.The main output of this feasibility trial will be the knowledge gained to help inform the development of a large multicentre RCT to evaluate the clinical and cost effectiveness of the use of live streaming to aid EMS dispatch for trauma incidents. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ISRCTN11449333. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. DOI
  • Prehospital video triage of potential stroke patients in North Central London and East Kent: rapid mixed-methods service evaluation

    Ramsay, Angus; Ledger, Jean; Tomini, Sonila; Hall, Claire; Hargroves, David; Hunter, Patrick; Payne, Simon; Mehta, Raj; Simister, Robert; Tayo, Fola; et al. (2022-09)
  • Predictors of survival from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest

    Chamberlain, Douglas (2010-10-21)
    This year is the 50th anniversary of the introduction of modern resuscitation from cardiac arrest, made possible by the combination of closed chest compressions with external defibrillation and effective artificial ventilation.1 Inevitably this was restricted initially to hospitals, but within a few years the need to counter sudden death in the community led to the development of cardiac ambulances. The appreciation that lethal cardiac arrhythmias are not only due to acute myocardial infarction but can also occur unpredictably from a myriad of causes led to more complex responses. In most developed countries we now have public education on the need for rapid access to help, widespread training in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), means of early defibrillation where relevant and skilled aftercare—the so-called ‘chain of survival’.2 But daunting problems markedly limit success, irrespective of knowledge and training within the community. Even when death strikes suddenly and prematurely, many cases are complicated by severe underlying pathology that is not always amenable to prompt treatment. Even more importantly, only a very few minutes are available for effective resuscitation before apparently irreversible cerebral and cardiac changes make recovery impossible. Survival from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OOHCA) is therefore achieved only in a small minority, even of those ‘too young to die’. Investigating the predictors of success can help to prioritise efforts to improve results that are currently so dire. They have also been used as a guide for recognising futility, with the aim of curtailing resuscitation attempts that may have no chance of success. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
  • Is there an association between 30-day mortality and adrenaline infusion rates in post-ROSC patients? A retrospective observational analysis

    Owens, Peter; Sherriff, Martyn
    Introduction: Revised guidelines for the management of cardiac arrest have placed greater emphasis on early defibrillation and closed chest compressions; subsequently there has been a significant rise in the number of patients gaining a return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC). As a consequence, emergency medical services have realised the importance of therapies delivered during this phase of care. In some Trusts this includes the use of inotropic agents to augment the cardiovascular system and maintain adequate cerebral and coronary perfusion pressures to mitigate the effects of post-cardiac arrest syndrome. Currently, limited evidence exists with regards to the efficacy of such treatments in the pre-hospital phase. Methods: Retrospective observational analysis of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients who received an adrenaline infusion by critical care paramedics. Infusion rates, time of call (ToC) to ROSC and 30-day mortality were compared. Results: Over a 2-year period, 202 patients were recorded as having an adrenaline infusion commenced. Of these, 25 were excluded as they did not meet criteria or had incomplete data and 22 were excluded as the infusion was stopped at scene; 155 patients were admitted to hospital. There were no survivors in the non-shockable group and three survivors in the shockable group at 30 days. A rare events analysis found no relationship between infusion rate, ToC to ROSC and 30-day mortality (Wald chi2, 1.37). Conclusion: Commencement of adrenaline infusions in post-ROSC was associated with significant 30-day mortality, especially in non-shockable rhythms. Further research is needed to elucidate whether this intervention has any benefit in the post-ROSC patient. Abstract published with permission.
  • Stroke prehospital video triage for suspected stroke patients: Qualitative analysis of implementation and stakeholder experience in four areas of the English NHS

    Walton, Holly; Aghoram, Prasanna; Bray, George; Dearling, Jeremy; Fulop, Naomi J; Hall, Claire; Hargroves, David; Hunter, Rachael M.; Hunter, Patrick; Ng, Pei Li; et al.
  • Ethnic differences in injury mortality rates among adult emergency healthcare service users in High Income Countries (HIC) – A Scoping Review

    Naha, Gargi; Baghdad, Fadi; Harwood, Sophie; Watkins, Alan; Porter, Alison; John, Ann; Evans, Bridie; Goodacre, Steve; Jones, Jenna; Williams, Julia; et al.
  • Consensus on innovations and future change agenda in Community First Responder schemes in England: a national Nominal Group Technique study

    Patel, Gupteswar; Botan, Vanessa; Phung, Viet-Hai; Trueman, Ian; Pattinson, Julie; Hosseini, Seyed Mehrshad Parvin; Orner, Roderick; Asghar, Zahid; Smith, Murray Donald; Rowan, Elise; et al. (2023)
  • 'Family members screaming for help makes it very difficult to don PPE.' a qualitative report on ambulance staff experiences of personal protective equipment (PPE) use and infection prevention and control (IPC) practices during the Covid-19 pandemic

    Eaton-Williams, Peter; Williams, Julia (BMJ, 2022-05-01)
    Background The COVID-19 Ambulance Response Assessment (CARA) study was a prospective, longitudinal survey of UK ambulance staff during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. CARA aimed to evaluate perceptions of preparedness and wellbeing, and to collect staff suggestions to benefit working practices and conditions. Method Three online questionnaires were presented, coinciding with the acceleration, peak and deceleration phases of the first COVID-19 wave in 2020. Inductive thematic analysis was employed to represent 14,237 free text responses from 3,717 participants to 18 free-text questions overall. This report focuses on experiences of IPC practices. Results Many participants lacked confidence in using PPE because of low familiarity, an inadequate evidence-base and changing policy. Some experienced insufficient supply, items of poor quality and suboptimal fit-testing procedure. PPE use was further influenced by discomfort, urgency, and perceptions of risk. Various suggestions were made to improve IPC practices, including decontamination personnel, staff 'bubbles' and limiting exposure through public education and remote triage improvements. Conclusion Repeated poor experiences of implementing IPC practices1 2 demand that lessons are learnt from this pandemic. PPE developed with specific regard for ambulance staff 's unique working environment and for them to receive regular familiarization training in its use would likely benefit performance and confidence. Overall, ambulance staff emphasised the need for IPC policies to be pragmatic, evidence-based and communicated with clarity. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: DOI

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