Paramedic Role in Primary Care

Having a Paramedic in the primary care team improves the skill mix within a multi-disciplinary team and makes more efficient use of the workforce available.

Paramedics can cut the amount of travel time for GP home visits (around 30 mins per visit) and significantly reduces stress levels for GPs which has a positive effect on recruitment and retention.

A paramedic can see patients presenting with acute or urgent (same day) problems, as well as offering pre-booked and routine appointments. They are also able to supervise students from a wide range of health and social care backgrounds.

What can a Paramedic do in General Practice?

The Paramedic will be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)

Some of the skills that the Paramedic will be able to demonstrate safely are:

  • Carrying out home visits, covering the vast majority of acute visits that would otherwise have been undertaken by a GP
  • Triaging and treating patients wishing to see a healthcare professional, making any necessary referrals to other members of the primary healthcare team
  • Running planned acute or minor illness clinics
  • Undertaking assessments for patients using diagnostic skills and initiation of investigations where appropriate
  • Encouraging changes in behaviour that can have a positive impact on patient health and well-being
  • Working with healthcare staff to prepare and deliver anticipatory care plans for complex patients deemed to be at risk of acute hospitalisation
  • Assessing, examining, treating and managing patients of all age ranges with a variety of acute undifferentiated and chronic conditions.

Paramedics that are working at an Advanced Practitioner / equivalent level and that have completed an Independent Prescribing module are able to prescribe.

It is a requirement for Paramedic registrants to have appropriate professional indemnity cover as a condition of their registration.

It is the responsibility of individual clinicians and their employers to ensure that Paramedics have appropriate indemnity cover in place.

What is the recommended salary for a Paramedic?

In general practice, a Paramedic’s salary can be negotiated, although there is a suggested range:

  • newly qualified Paramedic- Band 5 AFC equivalent
  • 2-5 years post-qualification – Band 6/7 AFC equivalent
  • Specialist Advanced Practitioner/ Independent Prescribing Paramedic – Band 7/8 AFC equivalent

What are Paramedics trained to do?

All qualified paramedics have undergone an approved qualification in Paramedic Science (either full time at university/ degree-standard apprenticeship or via a role with the ambulance service as a student Paramedic.) Becoming a paramedic takes between two and four years. The course includes a mixture of theory and practical work including placements with ambulance services and other healthcare settings.

The Health Education England Paramedic (Specialist in Primary & Urgent Care) Core Capabilities Framework describes the knowledge, skills and behaviours that must be acquired, developed and demonstrated in order to safely and effectively manage patients in Primary Care.

Supporting Evidence

An overview of the training pathway for Paramedics, the Challenges and Benefits of the role with references & further reading

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