Ch 49 Lesson 1 – Need for Evidence Based Guidelines

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EMS Care Chapter 49 | Research and Evidence-based Guidelines

Lesson 1 | Need for Evidence-based Guidelines

Slide 1 of 6

Welcome to the first lesson, where we talk about evidence-based guidelines and why you need them. We’ll also see the process involved and your role and contribution to it. So, let’s get started.

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The Center on Knowledge Translation for Disability and Rehabilitation Research defines evidence-based guidelines as the systematically developed statements to assist practitioner and patient decisions about appropriate healthcare for specific clinical circumstances.

When you break down this definition, evidence-based guidelines mean statements developed through rigorous scientific inquiry that inform the EMS communities on the standards of care that are backed by research.

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The National Pre-hospital Evidence-based Guideline Model Process has been approved by the Federal Interagency Committee on EMS and the National EMS Advisory Council. The NASEMO was given the grant to focus on EBG guidelines.

This approved process is a cyclical one, that starts with system inputs followed by evidence accumulation and evaluation. Based on the evaluation, the council determines and establishes priority for the same.

Accordingly, the EMS protocol development begins, and the same is disseminated to all EMS organizations and personnel. Once the guidelines are received, they are implemented, and the effectiveness of the same is evaluated. Evidence for these protocols and other necessary inputs is gathered from EMTs, and the process repeats.

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So, why do you need these evidence-based guidelines?

First off, it improves patient management, as these guidelines provide a standard and consistent approach to pre-hospital care. Closely related is the quality of patient care, as the treatment provided is based on proven scientific research, so the outcomes are sure to be better than any ad-hoc care.

From an EMT’s standpoint, EBG is helpful, as it establishes the cause-and-effect relationship and removes ambiguity.

It refines care and ensures that the safest methods of treatment are used.

Such a standardized approach helps EMTs provide the best care consistently and over time, leading to reduced stress.

Due to these reasons, evidence-based guidelines are necessary to enhance the overall EMS profession and adds credibility to pre-hospital care.

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As an EMT, it is your professional responsibility to participate in these research projects, so your inputs can help to shape the overall outcome. Your role would include completing the data collection forms and ensuring that the documentation is as accurate as possible. You can also alert researchers about specific use cases that deviate from the norm, so they can take those into account as well.

You may also be asked to complete questionnaires and surveys when needed, and you may also choose to volunteer and participate in research studies wherever it is suitable.

Finally, stay on top of the guidelines that are disseminated through your organization, implement them, and provide your feedback on the same.

All these can help in ensuring better job security and a safer working environment for you.

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With these thoughts, we come to the end of this lesson. Watch this video from The Veterans Health Administration (VHA), the largest integrated health care system in the United States, to know more about “Evidence-based” treatment.

From the next lesson on, we will explore specific areas where EBG has been implemented, or there’s enough evidence to implement it shortly. Justin will first talk about Naloxone.

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