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BMJ Open. 2017 Jun 30;7(6):e015017. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2016-015017.

Is the current level of training in the use of equipment for prehospital radio communication sufficient? A cross-sectional study among prehospital physicians in Denmark.

Author information

1
Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Mobile Emergency Care Unit, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark.
2
Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Physicians working in prehospital care are expected to handle radio communication both within their own sector as well as with other divisions of the National Emergency Services. To date, no study has been conducted on the level of training received by physicians in the use of the equipment provided or on the level of competency acquired by physicians.

METHODS:

In order to investigate the self-assessed skill level acquired in the use of the TETRA (TErrestrial Trunked RAdio) authority radio for communication in a prehospital setting, a cross-sectional study was conducted by questionnaire circulated to all 454 physicians working in the Danish Emergency Medical Services.

RESULTS:

A lack of training was found among physicians working in prehospital care in Denmark in relation to the proper use of essential communication equipment. Prior to starting their first shift in a prehospital setting 38% of physicians reported having received no training in the use of the equipment, while 80% of physicians reported having received one1 hour of training or less. Among the majority of physicians their current level of training was sufficient for their everyday needs for prehospital communication but for 28% of physicians their current level of training was insufficient as they were unable to handle communication at this level.

CONCLUSION:

As the first study in its field, this study investigated the training received in the use of essential communication equipment among physicians working in prehospital care in Denmark. The study found that competency does not appear to have been prioritised as highly as other technical skills needed to function in these settings. For the majority of physicians their current level of training was sufficient for everyday use but for a substantial minority further training is required, especially if the redundancy of the prehospital system is to be preserved.

KEYWORDS:

ACCIDENT & EMERGENCY MEDICINE; MEDICAL EDUCATION & TRAINING; Prehospital radio communication; SINE; TETRA; TETRA Authority radio

PMID:
28667210
DOI:
10.1136/bmjopen-2016-015017
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Conflict of interest statement

Competing interests: None declared.

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