Exploring the structure and characteristics of the Anglo-American paramedic system in developed countries: A scoping review

Timothy Makrides, Linda Ross, Cameron Gosling, Joseph Acker, Peter O’Meara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: This study aims to map and examine the existing evidence to provide an overview of what is known about the structure and characteristics of the Anglo-American paramedic system in developed countries.
Design/methodology/approachThe review includes results examining the structure and characteristics of the Anglo-American paramedic system in English-speaking developed countries. Databases, including Embase, MEDLINE, Web of Science, EBSCOhost, CINAHL, Google Scholar and Epistemonikos, were searched from the inception of the databases. A grey literature search strategy was conducted to identify non-indexed relevant literature along with forward and backward searching of citations and references of included studies. Two reviewers undertook title and abstract screening, followed by full-text screening. Finally, data extraction was performed using a customised instrument. Included studies were summarised using narrative synthesis structured around broad themes exploring the structure and characteristics of the Anglo-American paramedic system.
Findings: The synthesis of information shows that varying models (or subsystems) exist within the Anglo-American paramedic system. The use of metaphorical models based on philosophical underpinnings are used to describe two novel subsystems within the Anglo-American paramedic system. These are the professionally autonomous and directive paramedic systems, with the directive model being further categorised into the rescue and hospital-managed submodels.
Originality/valueThis study is the first of its kind to explore the modern subcategorisation of the Anglo-American paramedic system using a realist lens as the basis for its approach.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Emergency Services
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Dec 2021

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