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International Paramedics Day by Ambulance Life

This year, the theme for International Paramedics Day is What Paramedics Do. On July 8, the College of Paramedics, the professional body for paramedics and the ambulance profession in the UK will come together with more than 60 global paramedic associations, higher education institutions and affiliated organisations to raise awareness and create a better understanding of the breadth and depth of work carried out by paramedics around the world.

While last year’s inaugural International Paramedics Day was about building pride within the profession and celebrating the tremendous work carried out by paramedics and first responders during the Covid-19 pandemic, 2023 is all about inspiring the next generation of clinicians, improving public perception and showcasing the profession’s resourcefulness and diversity across all settings where paramedics work.

As skilled clinicians, paramedics and first responders make an extraordinary contribution to health and social care systems across the globe, helping patients when they need it most and providing safe and effective treatment.

They do this despite the many challenges the profession is currently facing, not just here in the UK but internationally. Ambulance handover delays, staff retention, morale and recognition of worth are just some of the key issues being felt by every paramedic and first responder working today. Yet despite these significant difficulties they continue to put their patients first by delivering exemplary, compassionate care.

Working in the ambulance service is, of course, an essential role which experienced paramedics perform all around the world but this is by no means all that they do. Since 2000, the role has evolved dramatically, and paramedics are now expected to manage a broad range of conditions in the out-of-hospital environment.

Today, the role intersects healthcare, public health, social care and public safety, meaning that paramedics and first responders are uniquely placed to work in a variety of settings including GP surgeries, Hazardous Area Response Teams (HART), offshore and the military to name but a few. Whether it’s a role in clinical practice, leadership and management, education or research, the possibilities for a paramedic to develop their full potential have never been greater as the profession continues to grow, change and adapt.

Chief Executive of the College of Paramedics, Tracy Nicholls OBE said: “Last year’s International Paramedics Day was a real celebration of the profession coming together from all over the world to reveal why they were proud to be paramedics. But this year, the message is clear – being a paramedic is a versatile, multifaceted, and diverse profession which has grown exponentially in the last decade. It’s time people recognised, understood and appreciated that. Working in the ambulance service is, of course, a vital role which highly-skilled paramedics perform all around the world,


and one that many people think of first, but this is by no means all that we do and paramedics are now managing a broad range of complex and challenging conditions in a wide range of out-of-hospital environments.”

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