There is no denying that paramedic-led intubation is a contentious issue in out-of-hospital care. Guidelines for the management of COVID-19 are developed with both patient-centred care as well as provider safety in mind, with intubation the preferred airway management strategy in patients suspected to have contracted COVID-19 requiring airway protection or invasive ventilation. However, this has re-ignited a debate which began during the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak in the early 2000s around whether the benefit of paramedic-led intubation outweighs the risks to providers during a pandemic. The aim of this commentary is to revisit the evidence around paramedic-led intubation and provide a perspective on paramedic-led intubation during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is hoped this will stimulate further discussion around the benefits and risks of paramedic intubation in the setting of a pandemic.
Armour, R., Helmer, J., & Deakin, J. (2020). Paramedic intubation during a pandemic: Where are the consensus guidelines? Australasian Journal of Paramedicine, 17, 1-4. https://doi.org/10.33151/ajp.17.806