Volume 2 Issue 3

Continuing Professional Development: Reading and reviewing academic articles

OverviewThis module will focus on accessing, reading and understanding academic journal articles. The ability to understand and use articles from journals is a fundamental aspect of paramedic practice. Like any skill, the ability to read and interpret journal articles, improves the more you practise it. If you are not used to reading articles, or it is not part of your everyday practice, then it can appear pretty daunting in the first instance. This module aims to ‘demystify’ and address some of these fears and hopefully at the end of the module, readers will feel more confident to access, read and begin to make sense of the published literature.Learning OutcomesAfter completing this module you will be able to:▪ Have an understanding of the key differences between case studies, reflective practice, literature reviews and research articles.▪ Understand the value of the various components of an article–such as the abstract, key words, key phrases, discussion and summary or conclusion.▪ Begin to develop your critical analysis skills.▪ Start your own simple, searchable filing system that works for you–useful to keep track of articles you have read either for your own interest or for a research project.▪ Develop an understanding of some of the commonly used research terms in articles.

Outlining the NIHR-funded masters in research

Over the next 3 years, the National Institute of Health Research, in conjunction with the Chief Nursing Officer for England, is supporting 210 scholarships for nurses, midwives and allied health professionals to study towards a masters in research qualification. The programme aims to provide learners with the skills to plan, manage and execute research projects in a rigorous and scientific manner; so that the non-medical professions begin to develop a cadre of staff who are capable of executing high quality, safe and ethical research programmes.

Spotlight on Research

Survival of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest with a good neurological outcome is dependent upon various factors including adequate coronary and cerebral perfusion pressures. Such pressures are related to the quality and continuity of chest compressions during cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

Modular treatment units for prehospital care

In recent years UK government policy has increased the provision of urgent care in the community. As part of this initiative, the ambulance service is gradually changing from an organization designed to convey patients to hospital, to a professional group capable of assessing and delivering appropriate treatment to the patient at scene. This paper explores the technology requirements needed to support new professional roles and draws on examples from ambulance trusts (emergency care practitioners), primary care (out-of-hours general practitioners and minor injuries units) and acute trusts (emergency departments). It describes the iterative process used to develop the design specification for modular treatment units for both vehicle and built environments, using a qualitative exploratory methodological framework. Data were collected with 125 staff and 88 patients over 18 months in five phases using stakeholder workshops (2007 and 2008); portable technology audits; treatment observations in emergency departments and walk-in centres; and design decision groups. The results were thematically coded and triangulated to define the functional design requirements for the modular treatment units. The results are discussed as a technology system for personal kit, assessment packages (and storage for other clinical treatment packages) and a modular clinical workspace.

Spinal injury: how should we immobilize in the prehospital environment?

Correct spinal immobilization is key to reducing the potential for further injury to the spinal cord. Effective management of actual injuries, or the potential for injury, has led to a protracted debate on which piece of equipment is fully fit for purpose. For the past 20 years, the UK ambulance service has been regularly using the rescue board (colloquially known as the ‘spinal board’) to immobilize patients. This paper seeks to review the current equipment and debate their appropriate applications.

Prehospital care: the case of the misplaced tube

This article critically reviews a fictional case study regarding a misplaced tracheal tube that was initially unrecognized despite a rigorous assessment to verify placement. It critically reviews the evidence surrounding verification techniques, tracheal tube securing and the principles of legal and ethical responsibility in patient handovers and transfer of care.

Aiming for the right constitution

The NHS belongs to all of us, so begins the revised edition of the NHS constitution. It addresses issues such as access to care, quality of care, respect, consent and confidentiality.

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