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Interprofessional education of medical students and paramedics in emergency medicine

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Emergency medicine is team work from the field to the hospital and therefore it is also important for physicians to understand the work of paramedics, and vice versa. Interprofessional emergency medicine education for medical and paramedic students in Helsinki was started in 2001. It consisted of a 15 European credit transfer system (ECTS) credits programme combining 22 students in 2001. In 2005, the number of students had increased to 25. The programme consisted of three parts: acute illness in childhood and adults (AI), advanced life support (ALS) and trauma life support (TLS). In this paper, we describe the concept of interprofessional education of medical students and paramedics in emergency medicine. Methods: 

After finishing the programmes in 2001 and in 2005, the students’ opinions regarding the education were collected using a standardized questionnaire. Results: 

There were good ratings for the courses in AI (2001 vs. 2005, whole group; 4.3 ± 0.7 vs. 4.2 ± 0.4, P= 0.44) ALS (4.7 ± 0.5 vs. 4.4 ± 0.5, P= 0.06) and TLS (3.9 ± 0.7 vs. 4.4 ± 0.5, P= 0.01) in both years. Most of the medical students considered that this kind of co-education should be arranged for all medical students (2001 vs. 2005; 4.8 ± 0.6 vs. 4.4 ± 0.5, P= 0.02) and should be obligatory (3.5 ± 1.5 vs. 3.1 ± 1.3, P= 0.35). Conclusions: 

Co-education was well received and determined by the students as an effective way of improving their knowledge of emergency medicine and medical skills. The programme was rated as very useful and it should be included in the educational curriculum of both student groups.

Keywords: education; emergency medicine; medical students; paramedics

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, Helsinki University Hospital

Publication date: March 1, 2007


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