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In treating accident victims, actions by the Emergency Medical Personnel (EMP) at the scene may be the difference between life or death, full recovery or permanent disability. Development of selected profiles based on locale of services, tenure, and paramedic certification will provide valuable insight into the diversity within the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) profession. Not only will these profiles enable administrators to improve their recruitment, training, and retention of the emergency medical workforce, it potentially could enhance the quality of health care in the community.
Emergency medical personnel attending a statewide conference in Texas in late 1996 (n = 425).
1) There is no difference between the profiles of urban and rural emergency medical personnel; 2) There is no difference between the profiles of urban EMP with <9 years of experience and those with ≥9 years of experience; 3) There is no difference between the profiles of rural EMP with <9 years of experience and those with ≥9 years of experience. 4) There is no difference between the profiles of urban EMP with paramedic certification and those without certification; and 5) There is no difference between the profiles of rural EMP with paramedic certification and those without certification.
EMP attending the conference completed 425 survey instruments measuring five demographic features, five work-related features, and two psychological features. Survey instruments were included in each registrant's conference package. Completed surveys were deposited anonymously in labeled receptacles throughout the statewide conference site. Data collection ceased at the end of the conference. Discriminant analysis identified distinct profiles for the urban and rural EMP.
The urban EMP, more than rural subjects, was younger (mean = 36 years), more likely to be compensated 100% for their services, had a higher level of education (mean = 13.8 years), and reported a lower level of burnout. Urban EMP with <9 years of experience tended to be younger, male, married, and reported less burnout. Urban paramedics were more likely to be compensated 100% for their services, and had achieved a higher level of education. The rural EMP with <9 years of experience were less likely to be paramedic, reported lower burnout scores, and was younger. The rural EMP without paramedic certification was more likely to be a volunteer, and have had fewer years of service.
In Texas, locale of service (urban or rural), length of tenure as an EMP (>9 years), and paramedic certification appear to be significant factors that define the EMP population in Texas.
Burnout among emergency medical personnel (emergency medical personne) is suspected, but largely unsupported in the literature. An investigation of the phenomenon of burnout and factors contributing to its existence are essential steps in designingeffective interventions.
Three research questions were proposed: 1) Are EMP sensation seekers as measured by Arnett's Inventory of Sensation Seeking? 2) Are EMP burnt out as measured by Revicki's Work-Related Strain Inventory? 3) Is there a relationship between sensation seeking and burnout among EMP?
Emergency medical personnel attending a statewide conference in Texas, USA in late 1996 completed 425 survey instruments measuring sensation seeking and burnout as well as demographic items. Survey instruments were included in each registrant's conference package. Completed surveys were deposited anonymously in labeled receptacles throughout the statewide conference site. Data collection ceased at the end of the conference.
Emergency Medical Personne had significantly higher sensation–seeking total and intensity sub–scale scores than the general public. Full–time employees reported more sensation–seeking than volunteers or part–time employees. The younger the Emergency Medical Personne, the greater were their reported sensation seeking tendencies. Emergency Medical Personne reported more burnout in 1996 than in 1991. The older the Emergency Medical Personne, the lower was the reported level of burnout. Emergency Medical Personne who sought counseling for a work–related event reported more burnout than those who did not. Paid full–time Emergency Medical Personne reported higher burnout than did volunteers. There was a weak but positive correlation between sensation seeking and burnout, suggesting that these two dimensions may be unrelated.
The field of emergency medical services attracts sensation seekers, and Emergency Medical Personne today report more burnout than their counterparts did in 1991. Although Emergency Medical Personne appear to be high in sensation seeking, this dimension alone does not protect them from the effects of burnout.
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