It’s natural for many paramedics and other health professionals to want to be the best clinicians they can be. Why put up with the long hours, extreme injury rate, abuse, and an employer who says you deserve a 0% pay rise because the fires and pandemic are unremarkable, unless you want to make a clinical difference in the lives of patients?
That is reflected in a late 2018 ADHSU survey on paramedic specialisation where 75% of P1 respondents wanted to advance clinically, 68% to ICP, 32% to ECP, and 5% ‘other’.
81% of combined respondents (all clinical levels including trainees) said that the NSW ICP scope of practice had stagnated and needs to expand.
This is great news for the NSW community as they can be satisfied that there are plenty of motivated clinicians who want to be highly and higher trained than they are now.
It should also be great news for an employer who doesn’t have to deploy cynical tactics to convince staff who want to continue to improve.
So what does NSWA do with all that? Demotivate staff by moving to limit ICP course applications/testing to once every 18 months.
ADHSU successfully pushed for HR numbers to be increased so these sorts of things would become more accessible to members, not to cut off hope to 75% of paramedic staff.
It only takes one tough night with the kids to underperform at an interview or exam, so limiting opportunities to once every one and a half years will have an effect on countless paramedics trying to get ahead.
We will engage management on this issue immediately and let members know the outcome.