About Paramedics Australasia

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Paramedics Australasia, or ‘PA’, is the peak professional organisation representing practitioners who provide paramedic services to the community. Paramedics are best known for their involvement in the delivery of out-of-hospital emergency medical care through their work with various ambulance service organisations and on humanitarian and relief operations. However, paramedics work in many environments including community, industrial, military, hospital and university settings.

Paramedics Australasia provides a respected voice in determining how changes in health service provision, legislation and clinical practice are shaped and implemented to enhance the quality of patient care. We do this by representing the interests of practitioners on matters relating to:

  • Health policies that affect the access to and delivery of front-line primary and emergency care
  • The professional standards of education, training, and continuing professional development
  • The funding, service standards, quality and accreditation of emergency service providers
  • The registration of practitioners and the regulatory framework of paramedic practice
  • The fostering of best practice through research into out-of-hospital and emergency medical care
  • Enhanced communication and interaction between paramedics and other health and allied health professionals.

The Paramedics Australasia logo represents an unwell, ashen-coloured patient (centre) being cared for by paramedics (on either side) wearing the universal first-responders medical colour, green. Overlaid on the patient is the ‘Staff of Asclepius’, which is a a serpent-entwined rod wielded by the Greek god Asclepius, a deity associated with healing and medicine and associated with health care in modern times.

Paramedics Australasia began as the ‘Institute of Ambulance Officers (Australia) – known as the ‘Institute’. The first recorded meeting of individuals to discuss the establishment of an Australian Institute of Ambulance Officers was conducted in Melbourne, Victoria in the Boardroom of the Windsor Hotel on 20 June, 1971.

Fig 1. Institute of Ambulance Officers (Australia) logo

Mr Laurie Shea, Vice-Chairman of the Ambulance Commission of Tasmania, convened the meeting “as it seemed apparent that there was a need for a body to bring together ambulance officers in Australia with a specific aim of increasing their professional competence and provide a forum for the exchange of technical information between leaders in allied disciplines and between ambulance leaders themselves”.

The inaugural meeting of the Institute was held in Canberra on 30 July, 1973; this meeting was to become the first Annual General Meeting of the Institute of Ambulance Officers (Australia). Over time, branches (or chapters) were established in each state and territory of Australia and the organisation matured into a vibrant professional body.

In 2000, the organisation changed its name to the Australian College of Ambulance Professionals, commonly referred to as ‘ACAP’ or the College’.

Fig 2. Australian College of Ambulance Professionals logo

In November 2011, a New Zealand chapter of the College was established.

In 2011, members voted to change the organisation’s name to better reflect the rapidly changing profession of paramedicine. Members chose ‘Paramedics Australasia’, and the organisation has gone from strength-to-strength in representing paramedics since then. Along with the new name came a new logo.

Paramedics Australasia provides a respected voice in determining how changes in health service provision, legislation and clinical practice are shaped and implemented to enhance the quality of patient care. We do this by representing the interests of practitioners on matters relating to:

  • Health policies that affect the access to and delivery of front-line primary and emergency care
  • The professional standards of education, training and continuing professional development
  • The funding, service standards, quality and accreditation of emergency service providers
  • The registration of practitioners and the regulatory framework of paramedic practice
  • The fostering of best practice through research into out-of-hospital and emergency medical care
  • Enhanced communication and interaction between paramedics and other health and allied health professionals.
  • Be part of an organisation which has supported paramedics for over 40 years
  • The use of post-nominals relevant to your membership level (e.g. MPA for full members)
  • Heavily discounted member rates to our premier annual Paramedics Australasia International Conference
  • Member access (usually free) to our many regular continuing professional development (CPD) events, conferences and workshops
  • Exclusive access to members-only scholarships to attend CPD events and conferences
  • Members-only access to the our eLearning content (https://elearning.paramedics.org)
  • Access to members-only content on the PA website (https://paramedics.org)
  • Exclusive access to members-only grants for research funding
  • Response, a quarterly paramedicine industry magazine delivered to your door or inbox
  • Rapid Response, a monthly electronic newsletter delivered to your inbox
  • Access to our special interest groups (SIGs)
  • Professional networking and international links
  • Opportunity to elevate membership status to Fellowship of Paramedics Australasia
  • Optional participation in our certified CPD program
  • Eligibility for election to various local and national committees
  • An impressive addition to your CV which demonstrates your professionalism to prospective employers
  • Members-only partner discounts at various organisations, including Elsevier
  • Membership is tax deductible.

Your membership will also support Paramedics Australasia to:

  • Provide a unified voice of the paramedic profession to the wider community, government and other organisations
  • Continue our decades long campaign for registration of paramedics
  • Support our student members with heavily subsidised membership
  • Continue to publish our open-access peer-reviewed journal, the Australasian Journal of Paramedicine
  • Support our websites, Facebook and Twitter social media presence to keep our profession informed of news
  • Represent paramedicine and paramedics on the Australian Resuscitation Council Committee
  • Representation of paramedicine and paramedics on government committees, regulatory bodies and other health care stakeholder activities.