University Of East Anglia: Paramedic Degree Launched

A three-year course will help the East of England Ambulance Service train the 'future generation of lifesavers.'

The Paramedic Science degree programme has been developed with the East of England Ambulance Service Trust (EEAST) to provide the next generation of ambulance responders, tackling some of the key issues raised with the service.

The course, which is awaiting approval from the Health and Care Professionals Council, will address staffing levels and response times which have come under scrutiny and prepare students to meet the health care needs of local people.

The degree will run alongside the EEAST training scheme, offering a balance of face-to-face experience using simulations and scenario work, lectures and a range of inter-professional learning experiences with medical students, nurses, midwives, pharmacists and other health professionals.

As graduates, the students will have learnt to be successful first contact professionals, assessing, treating and referring patients with acute, urgent, long-term conditions.

Rosie Doy, Associate Dean for the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences talked about how training must change as the role does:

"Paramedics need to be very experienced and very skilled with excellent decision-making skills and the role is evolving as we see a more aging population and more long-term conditions.

"It is vital that training evolves in a similar way and we are delighted that future paramedics will be able to benefit from the expertise and facilities available at UEA."

The EEAST is very involved in the course, and has also been running a recruitment drive for its more traditional training. They've had more than 2000 applicants to date.

A spokesperson for the Trust spoke about the issues they have been trying to resolve:

"Our main priority is to reduce lengthy ambulance delays at the moment and in order to do this, we need more paramedics. There is a real shortage of paramedics in the county at the moment so we welcome courses such as this which will train the future generation of lifesavers in the East of England."

The UEA is holding an Open Day for Paramedic Sciences on 1 March 2014.

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