How well do we as paramedics interpret ECGs?

“How well do we as paramedics interpret ECGs?” This is the question that this assignment will endeavour to answer. Most paramedics would like to think that this is done well, however given the introduction of pre-hospital thrombolysis, and PCI lab referrals in the Queensland Ambulance Service as well as other states it is important to get the basics right. This topic will review research both in Australia and overseas and the ability of paramedics to accurately interpret ECGs and whilst this is centred around diagnosing of STEMIs, this is a critical aspect of the decision and subsequent treatment process for thrombolytic administration or bypassing primary health care to PCI labs.

Peer reviewed journal articles obtained via the university library with links to PUBMed, ProQuest, Medline, and JEMs will be critiqued in this assignment. Reference will also be made to the recommended texts, as well as other acute coronary syndrome texts, ambulance clinical guidelines both in Queensland and interstate.  The challenge with such a subject such as this will be obtaining relevant and up to date information. Accurate ECG interpretation pertains to a variety of acute health conditions, with a wide and varied opinion on how to accurately interpret. The purpose of this article will be to highlight wether pre-hospital ECG interpretation is accurate or not, and to outline common pitfalls if any……………

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