ParamedicParamedic Practice students at Edge Hill University are set to benefit from a new partnership with an emergency services academy in Hamburg.

The new collaboration with Emergency Services Cooperation in Schleswig-Holstein (RKiSH) is part of a pan-European project, led by Edge Hill and colleagues from Saimaa University in Finland, to improve international paramedic practice through knowledge sharing and provide opportunities for hands-on experience of European emergency care.

Head of Paramedic Practice at Edge Hill, Phil Crompton, visited RKiSH recently to learn about the German emergency care system and discuss ways the three institutions can work together in the future. He said:

We’re looking at introducing an Erasmus exchange programme, similar to the one we have with Saimaa University. This would give students from both institutions the chance to put their learning into an international context and compare practice in the UK with that in other European countries.”

“We also hope to introduce staff exchanges so that academics from all three institutions can carry out collaborative research that will benefit us all.”

The results of this pioneering three-way collaboration will be published in the main paramedic academic journals in each country.

There are also plans for a European conference with high profile guest speakers from institutions across the continent, and a further partnership with a paramedic education provider in Italy.

“We learned a lot from the trip to Hamburg and have brought back some great examples of best practice, particularly around multi-casualty simulations, which we’re looking forward to sharing with our staff and students,” said Phil.

“Although the paramedic training programme in Germany takes three years, compared with the two-year programme in the UK, students don’t receive a professional registration status at the end. The staff at RKiSH are keen to work with us to professionalise paramedic practice in Germany and are visiting Edge Hill later in the year to see how we approach paramedic teaching.”