1 x 2-hour seminar weekly
1 x 2-day intensive workshop per semester
1 x 7-hour independent study weekly
1 x 50-minute on-line exercises weekly
1 Admission into GDPICP-Graduate Diploma in Intensive Care Paramedic Studies
1a Admission into MPARA-Master of Paramedic Science
2 3 of PARA8001, PARA8002, PARA8003
Must Satisfy: ((1 or 1a) and 2)
Assumed knowledge
Have a sound underpinning knowledge of paramedic practice.
Weekly on-line discussions/activities/participation; Practical work; Intensive attendance and participation; Assignments.
Topic description

To appropriately manage the critically ill patient, it is vital the Intensive Care Paramedic can recognise the indications, precautions and contraindications of the various pharmacological agents within their scope of practice. Based on contemporary clinical understanding and best practice, this subject will cover the pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics & prehospital application of a number of common medications used by intensive care paramedics within Australian ambulance and retrieval services. This topic will also provide a broad foundation of knowledge on common prescription medications, toxicological emergencies and medication used in pain management. This underpinning knowledge is critical to enable appropriate clinical decision making and management when dealing with the critically ill patient.

Educational aims

This topic aims to develop a high level of understanding of the pharmacological agents used in the prehospital environment. It will emphasise the parameters of use and the potential physiological alterations within diverse patient populations. This topic will ensure the Intensive Care Paramedic is confident in the use of common pharmacological interventions for the prehospital patient.

Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Examine the principles of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics relevant to prehospital pharmacology
  2. Interpret the legal constraints within which prehospital professionals can administer pharmacological agents
  3. Apply appropriate clinical concepts of drug dose management and drug interactions
  4. Examine the physiological and psychological mechanisms responsible for the perception, transmission and cognitive interpretation of pain
  5. Determine the key pharmacological agents and rationale for use for sedation, anaesthesia and chronic disease states
  6. Examine the prehospital interventions for the patient management in toxicological emergencies
  7. Evaluate the use of additional pharmacological interventions within retrieval medicine
  8. Identify the physiological considerations when administering pharmacology to special populations: paediatric, geriatric, bariatric & obstetric