The strategy to win registration has incorporated a broad multi-faceted program of building greater awareness of the profession and creating a more responsive professional body and communication platform. Paramedics Australasia (PA) today is a very different and much more effective professional body than what it was a few years ago.
Progress has been nothing short of spectacular. Political awareness throughout government and professional stakeholders has leapt; greatly expanded recognition has been achieved with significant government bodies (DoHA, HWA); and a suite of underpinning policy documents has been developed and promulgated. These policies reinforce the professionalism of the paramedic practitioners of today. Nationally there is a much more engaged, vibrant and visible profession; and a new name and image have been forged with re-badging and a crisp modern logo that has captured international attention.
One of the most significant recent outcomes showing the impact of PA was the recognition of paramedics as healthcare professionals, with eligibility for a range of new scholarships with Commonwealth funding. Truly excellent results have been achieved with nine offers of undergraduate scholarships worth more than $100,000 in the initial year alone
That is not to say that more could not be done – only that the commitment of human and physical resources has been very carefully managed with priority always placed on targeted and strategic activities to achieve maximum practitioner benefits and recognition where it counts. Still, the results speak for themselves with paramedics increasingly being recognised as professional practitioners alongside other health professionals – and with that comes a maturity of approach and potential registration.
So having achieved the first objective of getting the paramedic registration project and consultation program off the ground what comes next? The next stage is to mobilise responses to win the case for registration – that’s where the members have to stand up and participate.
To do this the current PA strategy is based on engaging practitioners and other major stakeholders who can play a role in delivering supportive responses across three major areas
1) an on line survey;
2) any consultation workshops and
3) through individual submissions.
A target of 3000 total responses has been set under the theme of TARGET 3000. That is actually a very modest target, since in New Zealand there was a 40% response to their recent registration survey. An equivalent response in Australia would be more than 6000.
How are we going to achieve that target? Well it’s simple – because we’re going to rely on you – the paramedics of Australia to show that you really do deserve to be recognised as health professionals by responding to any call for consultation. PA will be there alongside you as always with the following carefully planned program of strategic activities:
1. Information networks are being developed across several target groups including:
- · Paramedic practitioners drawn from all jurisdictions as individuals
- · PA Chapters – with specific Chapter support to match their initiatives
- · Private sector providers – including the development of separate sector submissions
- · ADF – Military engagement – both directly with Joint Health Command and individual medics
- · Academics – through NAPA links and individually as well as via University teams
- · Unions – through the NCAU network and established MOU agreements
- · Students – both individually and through the SPA Societies / orientation programs, and
- · Industry – Liaison with Identified professional bodies and stakeholder groups and lobbyists
2. Information packages are being prepared (and distributed) across these networks and include:
- · Video materials including potential YouTube clips
- · A registration primer including a brief ‘What is Registration’ is being planned
- · Draft discussion points are being made available against the six AHMAC registration criteria
- · PowerPoint and pdf presentations on registration.
3. Workshops will be delivered to private and other stakeholders
4. A written submission and one on-line submission will be submitted by PA directly to the project
5. Individuals are being encouraged to make on-line submissions and stand-alone written submissions.
6. Simple POS materials are being prepared based on the TARGET 3000 Roundel scheme
7. Whistlestop and other presentations are being delivered in various jurisdictions
8. Communication networks are being enhanced with social media to the fore
9. Multiple personal contacts are being maintained across political offices, healthcare policy areas
and media contacts to both inform and monitor developments.
10. Forum groups, Blogs and other outlets are being monitored and guided to respond positively.
11. Several independent contributors, researchers and writing teams are being mobilised.
13. One on one meetings are being undertaken with key stakeholder representatives and political figures.
Your active participation will be absolutely vital. A groundswell of support is needed, and every individual who believes that they are worthy of the role and title of a professional paramedic should become involved.
How can you become involved in registration issues?
> Contact Paramedics Australasia’s policy advisor Ray Bange at email@example.com
> Visit the PA website www.paramedics.org.au and read the registration documents
> Participate in the consultation program when it begins
> Talk to other paramedics in your workplace and be prepared for the registration debate!