University degree programme is an important step towards making the profession more attractive and developing it further through teaching and research

The Austrian University of Applied Sciences Conference (FHK), the umbrella organisation of 21 universities of applied sciences, very much welcomes the proposal to train emergency paramedics as part of 3-year Bachelor's degree programmes in future. In an international comparison, this professional field is assigned to the higher education sector and the qualification is taught as part of three-year practice- and application-orientated Bachelor's degree programmes. This ensures the academic compatibility of the training and the further development of the professional field.

"We are very pleased about the current initiative of the Chamber of Labour and the Federal Association of Rescue Services, because the professional field of emergency paramedics is closely related to the degree courses in healthcare and nursing already offered at universities of applied sciences, and our universities are therefore predestined to offer these courses in the future," says FHK President Ulrike Prommer.

As the study commissioned by the Chamber of Labour from the University of Applied Sciences of Eastern Switzerland shows, the range of tasks performed by this professional group goes far beyond their deployment in emergencies and, in addition to patient transport, also includes support and intervention with elderly and sick people at their place of residence. They are also often the first point of contact for social issues.

FHK President Prommer commented: "In the interests of healthcare provision for the population and to relieve the burden on the private practice sector, it is important that the new training programme covers the entire range of qualifications and that the new courses are quickly established at the universities of applied sciences."

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