Paramedics are employed by a single General Practice or by a Primary Care Network (PCN). Paramedics work at a variety of levels ranging from trainee First Contact Practitioner (FCP), to qualified Advanced Clinical Practitioner level (ACP). The Training Hub can support Paramedics, wherever they are in their career in primary care by providing access to information on funding, development and training to help enhance and embed core fundamentals and progress their career.
Health Education England (now NHS England) commissioned a framework which defines the capabilities of paramedics working in the primary and urgent care sectors which can be accessed here.
This is a role that has been included in the Additional Roles Recruitment Scheme since April 2021. Primary Care Networks may therefore be able to access funding via the CCG to cover salary and on-costs. We have now received details about core responsibilities and training requirements as well as reimbursement amounts, which can be found through the above link.
Community Paramedics must be:
educated to degree/diploma level in Paramedicine or equivalent experience
is registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
has completed their two-year Consolidation of Learning period as a newly qualified paramedic
has a further three years’ experience as a band 6 (or equivalent) paramedic
working towards developing Level 7 capability in paramedic areas of practice and, within six months of the commencement of reimbursement for that individual (or a longer time period as agreed with the commissioner), has completed and been signed off formally within the clinical pillar competencies of the Advanced Clinical Practice Framework
A BSc in a training programme approved by the College of Paramedics
For Band 7 roles, Health Education England (now NHS England) Primary Care FCP capability training must be completed as the minimum threshold for entry to primary care and be supported by appropriate governance and indemnity
Pprimary care FCP training can begin 3-5 years postgraduate
For Band 8a roles, the FCP training must be completed, and they must be working at an advanced level of practice i.e. at master’s level (level 7) across all four pillars of advanced practice
Supervision for Paramedics in Primary Care
Appropriate supervision will be required for all paramedics working in Primary Care.
Existing GP Educational supervisors are able to supervise paramedics undertaking FCP and AP roles and do not need to attend additional training.
Further guidance on supervision can be found in the First Contact Practitioners and Advanced Practitioners in Primary Care: (Paramedic) – A Roadmap to Practice.
Benefits to patients
Patients can currently spend two to three times longer consulting with Paramedics compared to GPs, e.g 20-30 minute meaning patients feel listened to, cared for and reassured
Quick access to diagnosis, treatment and advice in regards to minor ailments and injuries
Receive the right care, first time – safely managed in their own homes or in the community
Improved patient experience
Benefits to PCN’s
Frees up GP time, reduces GP stress by taking on home visits
Supports delivery of Enhanced Health in Care Homes
Practice workload is supported by an extra generalist resource increasing capacity to provide the most appropriate response first time to 999 calls and providing proactive care within the community
Patient care improves due to the increase in access and timely interventions by skilled paramedics
Undertake acute home visits on behalf of GPs, especially for local elderly or immobile population
Increased clinical leadership and service development capacity
Benefits to the wider NHS
Reduction in waiting times for patients accessing urgent care
Reduction in avoidable trips to A&E attendances and associated admissions
Relieve workload pressure and reduce impact on ambulance and secondary care