• Mentorship within the paramedic profession: a practice educator's perspective

      Lane, Matthew; Rouse, James; Docking, Rachael E. (2016-05)
      Abstract published with permission. Background ‐ The rapid ascension of paramedic science within higher education is creating a significant culture change within the profession. Clinicians are now accountable for both their patients as well as the learning of their students. Mentoring practices in the paramedic profession have been adopted from the findings of professions allied to healthcare, including medicine, nursing and midwifery, where mentorship is well established. The insufficiencies of this model need to be tested to account for the idiosyncrasies of the paramedic role. Methods ‐ A convenience sample of paramedic educators were identified across two ambulance services. Focus groups were conducted to obtain rich data about participants’ opinions on current mentoring practices within the paramedic profession and recommendations for how this can be improved. Results ‐ Results demonstrated the importance of learning through observation, teaching skills and personal qualities in relation to the paramedic educator role, as previously identified in the literature produced by professions allied to healthcare. Paramedic educators also identified current challenges to practice that included organisational issues such as ‘support’, ‘recognition’ and the ‘mental well-being’ of students. Conclusions ‐ This is the first primary research to explore mentoring from the paramedic educator perspective. In order to undertake their role more effectively paramedic educators are looking for a greater investment into the culture of mentoring by ambulance services and universities to address the identified organisational issues.
    • What do ambulance service personnel perceive to be the process of and issues with inter-hospital transfers?

      Rouse, James (2016-06)
      Abstract published with permission. At present, the inter-hospital transfer process has been described as suboptimal and current literature fails to describe or analyse the complete transfer process. In particular, the challenges and barriers from UK NHS ambulance services are yet to be described. To examine this further, a study has been undertaken to explore a NHS ambulance service personnel’s experiences, perceptions and issues relating to the inter-hospital transfer process. The findings have shown that ambulance personnel approach inter-hospital transfers from a business perspective, which affects the way they process and perceive transfers. There exists a consensus among staff that the inter-hospital transfer policy or procedure is not fully understood, due to a lack of clarity and mixed messages throughout the process. Staff members view the inter-hospital transfer process as a nuisance and have acknowledged it was inadequately executed. Additionally, undertaking certain inter-hospital transfers is seen as challenging paramedics’ professional identities.