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Emergency clinicians’ knowledge, preparedness and experiences of managing COVID-19 during the 2020 global pandemic in Australian healthcare settings


Li, C and Sotomayor-Castillo, C and Nahidi, S and Kuznetsov, S and Considine, J and Curtis, K and Fry, M and Morgan, D and Walker, T and Burgess, A and Carver, H and Doyle, B and Tran, V and Varshney, K and Shaban, RZ, Emergency clinicians' knowledge, preparedness and experiences of managing COVID-19 during the 2020 global pandemic in Australian healthcare settings, Australasian Emergency Care, 24 pp. 186-196. ISSN 2588-994X (2021) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2021 College of Emergency Nursing Australasia

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.auec.2021.03.008


Background: Emergency clinicians have a crucial role during public health emergencies and have been at the frontline during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study examined the knowledge, preparedness and experiences of Australian emergency nurses, emergency physicians and paramedics in managing COVID-19.

Methods: A voluntary cross-sectional study of members of the College of Emergency Nursing Australasia, the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine, and the Australasian College of Paramedicine was conducted using an online survey (June-September 2020).

Results: Of the 159 emergency nurses, 110 emergency physicians and 161 paramedics, 67.3–78% from each group indicated that their current knowledge of COVID-19 was ‘good to very good’. The most frequently accessed source of COVID-19 information was from state department of health websites. Most of the respondents in each group (77.6–86.4%) received COVID-19 specific training and education, including personal protective equipment (PPE) usage. One-third of paramedics reported that their workload ‘had lessened’ while 36.4–40% of emergency nurses and physicians stated that their workload had ‘considerably increased’. Common concerns raised included disease transmission to family, public complacency, and PPE availability.

Conclusions: Extensive training and education and adequate support helped prepare emergency clinicians to manage COVID-19 patients. Challenges included inconsistent and rapidly changing communications and availability of PPE.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:emergency care, emergency nurse, emergency physician, paramedics, COVID-19, pandemic
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Clinical sciences
Research Field:Paramedicine
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Provision of health and support services
Objective Field:Urgent and critical care, and emergency medicine
UTAS Author:Tran, V (Associate Professor Viet Tran)
ID Code:146688
Year Published:2021
Web of Science® Times Cited:14
Deposited By:Paramedicine
Deposited On:2021-09-22
Last Modified:2022-08-25

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