Paramedics' clinical judgment and mental health assessments in emergency contexts: Research, practice, and tools of the trade

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Title Paramedics' clinical judgment and mental health assessments in emergency contexts: Research, practice, and tools of the trade
Author Shaban, Ramon Zenel
Journal Name Journal of Emergency Primary Health Care
Year Published 2006
Place of publication Melbourne, Australia
Publisher Monash University and the Australian College of Ambulance Professionals
Abstract Mental health and illness are global health priorities. International reforms of mental health care systems repeatedly call for increased participation of a wide range of health, welfare, and disability professionals and organisations in providing services to people with mental disorders.1 There are increasing needs to improve mental health skills of all health-care professionals, improve coordination of services provided to consumers of mental health services and their and carers, and foster greater community interest and involvement in mental health issues.1 Despite this, the roles of paramedics and contributions they can make to the care of the mentally ill in the wider continuum of health care have not been fully recognised. Traditionally, the work of paramedics has been limited to managing specific conditions such as suicide. The reasons for this are many and varied, but one consequence of it is that research into paramedic judgment and decision-making of mental illness is rare. This paper will present a review of key research examining mental health assessments in the emergency care context, with a specific focus on paramedics. It will examine the use of mental assessment tools or instruments by ambulance and emergency medical personnel and highlight the needs for future research into this important area of health-care. Central to global mental health reforms is the preparedness of health care professionals, including paramedics, to recognise, assess, and manage mental illness in everyday practice and the sufficiency of education and training programs, clinical standards, policy, and legislation to ensure quality and accountability in the care of the mentally ill.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
Publisher URI
Copyright Statement Copyright remains with the author 2006 Griffith University. This paper is posted here with permission of the copyright owner for your personal use only. No further distribution permitted.
Volume 4
Issue Number 2
Page from 1
Page to 13
ISSN 1447-4999
Date Accessioned 2006-08-01
Language en_AU
Research Centre Centre for Health Practice Innovation; Menzies Health Institute Qld
Faculty Griffith Health Faculty
Subject Epidemiology
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1

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