Perceptions of doctors in prehospital care: a study
Thursday, January 21, 2010
The Tayside Trauma Team has been providing a physician-staffed primary retrieval service in Angus and Tayside for many years. This study aims to explore the experiences and current opinions of paramedics and ambulance technicians in Tayside and Angus regarding the role of physicians in prehospital care as well as their understanding of what physicians bring to the on-scene management of trauma patients.MethodsAn anonymous questionnaire was devised and circulated electronically to all paramedics and ambulance technicians in Tayside and Angus.ResultsMore than three quarters of respondents agreed that the ability of physicians to perform specific advanced practical procedures were advantageous on scene. Most disagreed that doctors carried out unnecessary interventions on scene and that a doctor's presence prolonged scene times, compromised scene safety or meant patient care was ‘taken over’.DiscussionThere appears to be a high level of understanding of the role of physicians in prehospital care among paramedics and ambulance technicians in Tayside and Angus. The majority of ambulance crews recognize that there are a key set of skills that a doctor can provide on scene to trauma patients.
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