Paramedic

Paramedic Functional Ability Standards

Because of the critical nature of the tasks needed in emergent situations, accommodation requests are considered very carefully on a case-by-case basis. The safety and welfare of the community must be ensured while providing full protection of the certification applicant’s rights. This is the main question to be considered: With the accommodation being requested, can this individual perform the essential functions of the job safely and efficiently?

 

The practice of prehospital emergency care requires the following functional abilities with or without reasonable accommodations:

  1. Visual acuity sufficient to assess patients and their environments and to implement the care plans that are developed from such assessments.

    Examples of relevant activities:

    1. Detect changes in skin color or condition.
    2. Collect data from recording equipment and measurement devices used in patient care.
    3. Draw up the correct quantity of medication into a syringe, if applicable.
  2. Hearing ability sufficient to assess patients and their environments and to implement the care plans that are developed from such assessments.

    Examples of relevant activities:

    1. Detect sounds related to bodily functions using a stethoscope.
    2. Detect audible alarms within the frequency and volume ranges of the sounds generated by mechanical systems that monitor bodily functions.
    3. Communicate clearly in telephone and radio conversations.
    4. Communicate effectively with patients and with other members of the healthcare team.
  3. Olfactory ability sufficient to assess patients and to implement the care plans that are developed from such assessments.

    Examples of relevant activities:

    1. a. Detect foul or unusual odors of bodily fluids or spoiled foods.
    2. b. Detect smoke from burning materials.
  4. Tactile ability sufficient to assess patients and to implement the care plans that are developed from such assessments.

    Examples of relevant activities:

    1. Detect changes in skin temperature.
    2. Detect unsafe temperature levels in heat-producing devices used in patient care.
    3. Detect anatomical abnormalities, such as subcutaneous emphysema, crepitus, edema, or infiltrated intravenous lines.
  1. Strength and mobility sufficient to perform patient care activities and emergency procedures.

    1. Safely transfer patients in and out of bed.
    2. Perform endotracheal intubation in a narrow hallway.
    3. Hang intravenous bags at the appropriate level.
    4. Perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation in a moving ambulance.
    5. Able to lift 50 pounds.
  2. Fine motor skills sufficient to perform psychomotor skills integral to patient care.
    Examples of relevant activities:

    1. Safely dispose of needles in sharps containers.
    2. Accurately place and maintain position of stethoscope for detecting sounds of bodily functions.
    3. Manipulate small equipment and containers; such as syringes, vials, ampoules, and medication packages to administer medications, as applicable.
  3. Physical endurance sufficient to complete assigned periods of clinical practice.

  4. Ability to speak, comprehend, read, and write in English at a level that meets the need for accurate, clear, and effective communication. Please see pre-registration requirement above for outline of details.

  5. Emotional stability to function effectively under stress, to adapt to changing situations, and to follow through on assigned patient care responsibilities.

  6. Cognitive ability to collect, analyze, and integrate information; knowledge to make clinical judgments and management decisions that promotes positive patient outcomes.