Archived project

Social media in paramedic education

Goal: To investigate and describe the use of social media in paramedic education and continuing education

Date: 1 November 2018

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Project log

Alan M Batt
added a research item
The chances are if you are a paramedic and on social media the hashtag #FOAMed has slinked across your device screen as you’ve scrolled through news, memes and public commentary. What is this hashtag and why does it create such a stir in the medical community? This article outlines what FOAM is, highlights concerns that should be borne in mind when accessing and using FOAM resources, and provides an overview of FOAM resources targeted at paramedics and pre-hospital care providers.
Alan M Batt
added a research item
Social Media is growing in popularity, quickly becoming the go to medium for keeping up to date, collaborating, networking & sharing knowledge. In November 2015 we registered a hashtag, #IrishEMS, with the express aim of hosting a one hour chat each Monday night. While it was open to all and its success relied upon international and multidisciplinary contributors, the hashtag was chosen to give it a focus based in Irish prehospital guidelines and Irish EMS practice. The purpose of this study was to outline the objective of the hashtag #IrishEMS and to offer insight into the extent of its reach. We hypothesised that practitioners in Ireland and abroad contributed to, and benefited from this venture. It remains our view that this simple measure is a valid source of verifiable continuous professional competency (CPC) for practitioners. An analytical report of all tweets containing the hashtag #IrishEMS was generated from the date of registration of the hashtag. This allowed for analysis of impact using several variables such as number of tweets, impressions etc. Transcripts and the analytics of each Monday night's chat were analysed to explore the number of contributions, the overall reach of these tweets and the professional background of the participants. In the study period from November 2015 to June 2016, we recorded over 6,000 tweets which included the hashtag #IrishEMS. A total of 590 contributors from a range of healthcare professions and voluntary backgrounds were involved with a total potential reach of almost 7 million users. Topics of discussion varied from clinical, to leadership, to service delivery and professional development issues. The majority of participants involved in each chat were National Ambulance Service EMTs, Paramedics and Advanced Paramedics. #IrishEMS chats encouraged practitioners to engage with prehospital topics with an Irish perspective. An opportunity exists for individuals to record chats with a similar focus as the #IrishEMS chats, on a regular basis, either electronically or simply by printing a transcript of the discussion as evidence of continuing professional competency activity.
Alan M Batt
added a research item
BACKGROUND AND AIM Twitter® use among paramedics and other prehospital care clinicians is on the rise and is increasingly being used as a platform for continuing education and international collaboration. In 2014, the hashtag #FOAMems was registered. It is used for the sharing of emergency medical services, paramedicine, and prehospital care-related content. It is a component of the ‘free open-access meducation’ (FOAM) movement. The aim of this study was to characterize and evaluate the content of #FOAMems tweets since registration. MATERIALS AND METHODS An analytical report for #FOAMems was generated on symplur.com from February 4, 2014, to April 30, 2017. A transcript of all #FOAMems tweets for a randomly selected 1 month period (October 2015) was generated, and quantitative content analysis was performed by two reviewers. Tweets were categorized according to source (original tweet/retweet) and whether referenced. The top 92 tweeters were analyzed for professional identity. RESULTS During the study period, there were over 99,000 tweets containing #FOAMems, by over 9,200 participants. These resulted in almost 144 million impressions. Of the top 92 tweeters, 50 were paramedics (54%). Tweets were mainly related to cardiac (23%), leadership (19%), and trauma (14%). The 1-month period resulted in 649 original tweets, with 2110 retweets; 1070 of these were referenced. CONCLUSION Paramedics are engaging with both clinical and nonclinical content on Twitter® using #FOAMems. Social media resources are widely shared, which is in line with the FOAM movement's philosophy. However, opportunities exist for paramedics to share further diverse resources supported by referenced material.
Alan M Batt
added a project goal
To investigate and describe the use of social media in paramedic education and continuing education
 
Alan M Batt
added 8 research items
Background The impact of social media and online learning in health professions education has previously shown generally positive results in medical, nursing and pharmacy students. To date there has not been any extensive research into social media and online learning use by prehospital health care professionals such as paramedics. Aim & Methods We sought to identify the extent to which Irish pre-hospital practitioners make use of online learning and social media for continuous professional competency (CPC), and the means by which they do so. A cross-sectional online survey of practitioners was conducted to obtain both quantitative and qualitative data. The release of the survey was in a controlled manner to PHECC registrants via various channels. Participation was voluntary and anonymous. Results A total of 248 respondents completed the survey in full by closing date of 31 March 2015, representing 5.4% of all registrants (n=4,555). 77% of respondents were male, and the majority were registered as Emergency Medical Technicians (49%), followed by Advanced Paramedics (26%). Over 78% of respondents used a mobile device in the course of their clinical duties; the majority used an iOS device. Social media and online learning were considered learning tools by over 75% of respondents, and over 74% agreed they should be further incorporated into prehospital education. The most popular platforms for CPC activities were YouTube and Facebook. The majority of respondents (88%) viewed self-directed activities to constitute continuous professional development activity, but 64% felt that an activity that resulted in the awarding of a certificate was better value. Over 90% of respondents had previous experience with online learning, but only 42% indicated they had previously purchased or paid for online learning. Conclusion Prehospital practitioners in Ireland in the population studied consider online learning and social media acceptable for CPC purposes. The main social media outlets used by PHECC registrants are YouTube and Facebook. Practitioners consider online learning that awards a certificate to be better value than self-directed activities. The majority have previous experience of online learning. The results of this study can be used to ensure educational interventions are targeted at practitioners through the correct channels.
Background Twitter use amongst paramedics and other clinicians involved in prehospital care is on the rise, and is increasingly being used as a platform for continuing education and international collaboration. In 2014 the hashtag “FOAMems” (#FOAMems) was registered. It is used by clinicians who are involved in the sharing of clinical and other knowledge related to emergency medical services (EMS), paramedicine and prehospital care. It is an extension of the FOAM (free open access medical education) movement. Objective The purpose of this study was to characterise and evaluate the content of #FOAMems tweets in the first two years of operation. Methods An analytical report for #FOAMems was generated on symplur.com, with a search date from 4th February 2014 (registration date of hashtag) to 4th February 2016, a total period of 24 months. The full transcript and analysis of all tweets for a randomly selected one month period (1st-31st October 2015) containing the hashtag was also generated on both symplur.com and Followthehashtag. All tweets for the one month period were reviewed and categorised by two reviewers. Data from both reports was used to obtain the results. Results During the study period, there were over 42,000 tweets containing #FOAMems, generated by over 6,000 participants. These tweets resulted in over 60 million impressions. The top 92 tweeters of #FOAMems during this period were analysed for professional qualification or identity. Of these, 48 were paramedics (52%). Tweets were also categorised based on content, source (original tweet or retweet) and whether referenced. Conclusion Paramedics are engaging with both clinical and non-clinical content on Twitter using #FOAMems, with the majority of tweets relating to clinical issues. Social media resources are widely tweeted, which is in line with the FOAM movement’s philosophy. However, opportunities exist for paramedics to share further diverse clinical knowledge supported by referenced material.
Background Twitter use amongst paramedics and other clinicians involved in prehospital care is on the rise, and is increasingly being used as a platform for continuing education and international collaboration. In 2014 the hashtag “FOAMems” (#FOAMems) was registered. It is used by clinicians who are involved in the sharing of clinical and other knowledge related to emergency medical services (EMS), paramedicine and prehospital care. It is an extension of the FOAM (free open access medical education) movement. Objective The purpose of this study was to characterise and evaluate the content of #FOAMems tweets in the first two years of operation. Methods An analytical report for #FOAMems was generated on symplur.com, with a search date from 4th February 2014 (registration date of hashtag) to 4th February 2016, a total period of 24 months. The full transcript and analysis of all tweets for a randomly selected one month period (1st-31st October 2015) containing the hashtag was also generated on both symplur.com and Followthehashtag. All tweets for the one month period were reviewed and categorised by two reviewers. Data from both reports was used to obtain the results. Results During the study period, there were over 42,000 tweets containing #FOAMems, generated by over 6,000 participants. These tweets resulted in over 60 million impressions. The top 92 tweeters of #FOAMems during this period were analysed for professional qualification or identity. Of these, 48 were paramedics (52%). Tweets were also categorised based on content, source (original tweet or retweet) and whether referenced. Conclusion Paramedics are engaging with both clinical and non-clinical content on Twitter using #FOAMems, with the majority of tweets relating to clinical issues. Social media resources are widely tweeted, which is in line with the FOAM movement’s philosophy. However, opportunities exist for paramedics to share further diverse clinical knowledge supported by referenced material.