Click here to access a single PDF containing these four conference posters, plus our set-up resources.
The single question I get asked most often about the Paramedic Postbox is "but what about information governance?". And my answer is in all honesty I think that's over-complicating it.
We approached this the other way round : if you regard paramedic colleagues like any other referring health-care professional (even though they may not have an ongoing duty of care to the patient, they certainly had that duty of care at the time they cared for them), then the situation is exactly analogous to:
Emergency Department staff in Major Trauma Units getting their summary of what-happened-next about patients referred to Major Trauma Centres (which is regarded as good practice)
Me (as an ED doctor in a rural DGH like my former hospital in NW Wales) ringing up the neurosurgical unit in a different country (England) to see how a patient did that I sent with a SAH.
A GP from the local GP Out of Hours service asking what happened to a patient they sent you yesterday
If you think that's perfectly reasonable (as surely we all do) then it's reasonable to let paramedics know what happened to their patient, so long as the feedback is handled securely and with the proper regard for confidentiality. If on the other hand your organisation doesn't think that's reasonable, that's fine, but then make sure that principle applies to all your HCP referrers and don't have one rule for doctor referrers who aren't employees of the same organisation and one for paramedic colleagues!
The challenge that anyone who wants to start a similar system will find, is the ED clinician time to do it. We used ED ST4+ doctors, and when there were two of them sharing the duties, the Postbox worked really well. When we tried to do it with one, who was in the midst of postgraduate exams, it understandably fell over. It is much easier in EDs that have full electronic patient records (ours didn't) and some hospitals are using their ED ACPs instead of doctors, which I believe can work well. But the demand could easily be overwhelming in a large ED.
The Bangor Paramedic Postbox was due to re-start sometime in late summer 2020. The MkII Postbox will be run by Dr Nikki Sommers - who, as a ST5 registrar, was one of the two original middle-grades who ran the Postbox at start-up. Now a Consultant in EM in Ysbyty Gwynedd, Nikki has taken this project over, as I no longer work in Bangor ED.