Level of care provided by Paramedics at the scene of mass gathering events

Author: Hashem Alrefae

Alrefae, Hashem, 2020 Level of care provided by Paramedics at the scene of mass gathering events, Flinders University, College of Medicine and Public Health

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Background: Mass gatherings present unique challenges to the health care system. Nevertheless, few studies focus on the level of care that paramedics can provide at mass gatherings, although paramedics are one of the main on-site medical services that respond to various patient presentations at these events. Hence, this study aimed to identify patient presentation range and the optimal level of care paramedics can provide at mass gatherings.

Method: This qualitative study used a two-pronged approach to identify the range of patient presentations at these events. First, an existing dataset of 15 events in South Australia was analysed, and, a scoping review of systematic reviews on these events globally was conducted.

Results: The results indicated that patient presentations vary and include health problems related to cardiac, respiratory, heat, alcohol and/or illicit drug, injuries, minor health problems and others. Although most medical care providers at these gatherings represent a low level of care, event unpredictability implies advanced medical care will be required.

Conclusion: Most patient presentations at mass gatherings are minor; however, high-acuity patient presentations also occur. This paper argues that higher level paramedics (Intensive Care Paramedic or above) may be required to manage possible varied patient presentations at mass gatherings.

Keywords: Paramedic, Prehospital care, Ambulance officer, Mass gathering, MG, Systematic review

Subject: Public Health thesis

Thesis type: Masters
Completed: 2020
School: College of Medicine and Public Health
Supervisor: Dr Anna Hall