Community response paramedics trained in wound care
A new programme in Kenilworth, UK, is training a specialised team of paramedics in wound care and other advanced medical treatments.
The West Midlands Ambulance Service has trained five community paramedics to be rapid responders in cases of emergency. These specialised paramedics will have extra skills to treat patients with minor wounds in their homes, instead of taking them to the accident and emergency department.
'By having more bases from which to respond to medical emergencies, we can get to patients in need far more quickly,' said Martyn Scott, Area Manager for West Midlands Ambulance Service. 'The five paramedics that are to be based there will receive additional training, making them Advanced Paramedics, with additional skills in assessment, such as urine-testing and treatment procedures, such as wound care.'
The aim of this project is to change the way patients see paramedics. Instead of simply transporting patients to and from hospital, the paramedics will have an increasingly active role treating minor injuries in the households of patients, reducing the need for unnecessary trips to the hospital.
'We firmly believe that the public's expectation of an ambulance taking every patient to an A&E (accident and emergency) should be a thing of the past,' Scott explains. 'There are often more appropriate ways to treat a patient and these are better for patients and the National Health Service (NHS) as a whole.'
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Image: Ambulance. Credit: Ingy the Wingy on Flickr.