Today, Health Education England has launched a roadmap to provide a clear, national career route for those paramedics wanting to work in primary care roles and those who already do so.
The new educational training pathway provides a standard of practice which will ensure a solid governance structure around First Contact Practitioner and Advanced Practitioner roles in primary care, a move which is supported by the College of Paramedics.
Tracy Nicholls, CEO of the College of Paramedics, said:
“We have seen members migrate to work within a primary care environment over a number of years now. Whilst it is a different environment and case load, the synergies are evident and we have seen many members flourish in these roles.
“The ability for paramedics to see the different routes for career development through the roadmap will be helpful and support wider, multi-disciplinary teams providing more holistic patient care within the community.”
Everyone completing the required training pathway, which can be done through a taught or portfolio route, will be recognised and held on a directory of practitioners at the HEE Centre for Advancing Practice.
It means that employers will have a much better understanding of what individual clinicians can offer to a multi-professional team to provide the best care possible for patients.
In addition, the ‘capability framework’ also provides clear guidance about the expected supervision needed to support the Roadmap to Practice and outlines the bespoke supervision training that a supervisor needs to have completed.
Helen Beaumont-Waters, who is an Advanced Paramedic and Head of Clinical Development in Primary and Urgent Care for the College of Paramedics said:
“Primary care is a very different environment to traditional ambulance service settings, and as such requires specific capabilities to work safely and effectively.
“Traditionally, an ambulance paramedic’s development focuses on increasing their clinical expertise. A key aspect of a First Contact Practitioner (FCP) or Advanced Practitioner(AP) working in primary care is the development and integration of all four elements of Advanced Practice which naturally interlink.”
She added: “The First Contact Practitioner Roadmap for Paramedics guides our primary care paramedics to evidence their skills, knowledge and attributes to demonstrate such capabilities, and to thus work towards recognition and inclusion on HEE’s Centre for Advancing Practice directory. It provides a clear route from entry into primary care, to FCP and AP levels of practice, whether by an academic route or by the development of a portfolio to evidence retrospective skills, including experience.”
Dr Safina Haque, a Primary Care Network Clinical Director, PCN4, said:
“At PCN level, we welcome the launch of the First Contact Practitioner Roadmap for Paramedics. It will guide both employer and employee of the minimum standards we expect in primary care.”
The College of Paramedics continues to actively work with HEE and the Centre for Advancing Practice to determine the role of professional examinations, such as the Diploma in Primary and Urgent Care offered by the College, to support paramedics to credential as Advanced Practitioners in Primary Care.
Click here for the road map.