Current PhD Students

The Department of CommunityEmergency Health and Paramedic Practice is committed to developing the nextgeneration of paramedic PhD scholars, professionalising paramedic care, andbuilding capacity for paramedic researchers internationally. We are committed to pursuing knowledgethrough research to help develop contemporary paramedic best-practicenationally and internationally.

Hear from some of our research success stories:

Dr Ziad Nehme commenced his academic studies with DCEHPP in2004, completing the Bachelor of Emergency Health (Paramedic), and went on toundertake his Honours degree in 2007. Ziad’s Honours thesis evaluatedventilation competency during simulated cardiopulmonary resuscitation in noviceparamedics. Having published his research in peer-reviewed journals, Ziadpresented his work internationally at the EMS Today Conference in Balitmore,USA. In 2009, he completed postgraduate studies in Clinical Research Methods,before commencing his PhD with the Department of Epidemiology and PreventiveMedicine, Monash University. Ziad’s PhD focused on the early response toout-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) patients in Victoria, Australia, whichdemonstrated that improvements in survival from OHCA could be achieved with asystems-based approach to care. During his candidature, he published over 25peer-reviewed articles (15 as first-author) in leading medical journals such asCirculation, Heart and Resuscitation. Ziad is now a qualified Advanced LifeSupport Paramedic and Clinical Researcher with Ambulance Victoria and anAdjunct Senior Lecturer with the DCEHPP.


DrAla’a Oteir is a passionateacademic, researcher, paramedic and physiotherapist. Ala’a is from Jordan, andmoved to Australia to commence his PhD, receiving a scholarship from JordanUniversity of Science and Technology (JUST). His research interest focused onthe use of prehospital spinal immobilisation and its association with patientoutcomes. During his PhD Ala’a published in the top prehospital emergencyjournals and presented at several international conferences. One of his paperswas selected in the top three papers in the Paramedics AustralasiaInternational Conference 2015. Ala’a was actively involved in teaching andresearch with DCEHPP including teaching research units, participating inpractical tutorials, and assessing students in theoretical and practical exams.It is noteworthy that Ala’a is the first paramedic with a PhD degree in Jordan.He is now back in Jordan, re-joined JUST, and is aiming to use his teaching andresearch experience to improve the paramedics program at JUST as well as theparamedic profession, education and research in Jordan and the Middle East.


Dr Abdulellah AlThobaity selected Monash Universityfor my PhD as it has an excellent reputation globally, and it is verywell-known in my country (Saudi Arabia). Monash is ranked very high amongst theworld’s universities and provides many master’s programs in nursing with a varietyof options, such as doing research, coursework, or coursework and researchtogether. Also when selecting, the availability of supervisors, who are expertsin the field of disaster nursing was of prime importance

My experience at Monash University has been oneof the best and most rewarding times of my life. These experiences includedlearning from outstanding supervisors who are experts in different types ofresearch methodologies and who provide endless help and support forinternational students. Also, Monash provided us research students with aseries of training courses covering research essentials: how to makepublications, and the essential skills for communication and disseminations andmore about different training courses, such as doing research with highintegrity. Overall, it was a really great experience, and I will take all theexperiences that I gained from Monash University and put them into practice inmy professional context in Saudi Arabia.


Dr Shane Costello interests are primarily drawn from the study of individualdifferences (personality and cognitive abilities). This area of research seeksto further our understanding about people, who they are, how they differ fromeach other, and why they do what they do. In addition, I am particularlyinterested in the study of psychometrics, or measurement science, which relatesto the design, construction, validation, and evaluation of psychologicalinstruments. Finally, I also maintain interests in trauma for emergency servicesworkers, and aviation human factors.


Current PhD Students


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Janet Curtis

Qualifications
DipPE, BSc, PGCert Int. Paramedic, PGDip Int. Paramedic, MSc (Hons), MEH

Email: Janet.m.curtis@monash.edu

Project Title

A mixed methods investigation into the effectiveness of workplace bullying interventions in a New Zealand ambulance service.

Primary Supervisor

Dr. Paul Jennings
Director of Research,
Department of Community Demergency Health and Paramedic Practice
Monash University

Co-Supervisors

Associate Professor Leanne Boyd
Executive Director
Cabrini Health, Australia

Professor Michael O'Driscoll
School of Psychology
Waikato University
New Zealand

PhD Project Summary

In the last decade interest in workplace bullying has increased due to its consequences on health of the worker and the organisation (Strandmark K & Hallberg, 2007; Zapf & Einarsen, 2001).

The literature reviewed to date has shown no research looking specifically at the concept of workplace bullying in ambulance services, the prevalence of bullying within ambulance or a link to their organisational climate or culture. A number of factors have been identified in police and fire as causes for bullying. Given that ambulance services have a similar structure and culture, it is possible that ambulance paramedics are at risk of bullying.

Research on organisational efforts to deal with bullying or interventions and their effectiveness to address bullying behaviour is in its infancy (O'Driscoll et al., 2011; Saam, 2010). A literature search did find articles suggesting different approaches that organisations could and should consider to deal with workplace bullying but none have applied them and measured the outcome on bullying behaviour.

The aim of the proposed research is to address the lack of information on workplace bullying in the ambulance sector by investigating the prevalence of workplace bullying in an ambulance service in New Zealand, the interventions being used by this ambulance organisation to deal with workplace bullying and how effective these interventions are perceived by staff. It is hoped that the research will identify barriers to optimal management of workplace bullying in an ambulance service in New Zealand and identify potential solutions to overcome these barriers.

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Tegwyn McManamny

Qualifications
BEH(Paramedic)(Hons.),MPA

Email: tebat1@student.monash.edu

Project Title

What is the education role of paramedics for individuals and communities within metropolitan, rural and remote Australia?

Primary Supervisor

Dr Paul Jennings

Co-Supervisors

Dr Jade Sheen, Dr Leanne Boyd

PhD Project Summary

A growing body of research indicates that paramedics may have a greater role to play in the provision of healthcare, beyond the traditional models of emergency health provision. This project will investigate the current and potential education roles of paramedics in both the individual and community settings within geographically varied areas of Australia, in order to understand the context, attitudes and beliefs related to the roles of these specialised emergency healthcare workers. The project will utilise mixed methods to underpin the research, in an effort to add richness to a healthcare question set within a complex environment.

Peer reviewed publications arising from your PhD studies

McManamny T, Sheen J, Boyd L, Jennings P. Mixed methodsand its application in prehospital research. Journal of Mixed Methods Research. 2014, doi:10.1177/1558689813520408.

McManamny T, Boyd L, Sheen J. Occupational risks inundergraduate student paramedic clinical placements. Journal of Health,Safety and Environment. 2013:29(1) 35-50.

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Linda Ross

Qualifications
BTeach, GDipEd(PhysEd), DipHlth(Amb), BParaStud, MHPEd

Email: linda.ross@monash.edu

Project Title

Investigating the psychosocial needs of older adults in the out of hospital environment and building the capacity of paramedics to meet these needs.

Primary Supervisor

Associate Professor Brett Williams

Co-Supervisors

Dr Paul Jennings, Professor Colette Browning

PhD Project Summary

Older people (commonly defined as greater than 65 years), currently comprise about 14% of Australia's total population. Australian Bureau of Statistics projections are that this figure will increase to 25% over the next 25 years. Increasing life expectancies, declining fertility rates and advances in medicine are often cited as responsible for this aging trend. Aging is generally associated with declining health, therefore as the number of older people in our population increases, so does the demand on the health care system and emergency ambulance services.

Elderly patients have complex and diverse needs and are often prone to the cumulative effects of multiple chronic diseases and disability. There is also a high prevalence of social and care related problems due to declining mobility, self-care or isolation. Specific communication barriers may also lead to the inability or failure of patients to report their symptoms and to provide accurate, consistent medical history.

Whilst there is great emphasis placed on preparing paramedics to understand and treat the complexities of physical ailments, it is unclear however how much time and content is provided in paramedic curricula in Australia on the complex pscyhosocial needs of the older patients.

The aim of this research is to determine the psychosocial needs of older patients in the out of hospital environment and investigate how best undergraduate paramedic education can prepare future practitioners to meet these needs.

 

Simon Sawyer

PhD Student
Bachelor of Psychology and Management/Marketing, BEH(paramedic)

Email: spdou1@student.monash.edu

Project Title

The prehospital response to intimate partner violence

Primary Supervisor

A/Prof Brett Williams

Co-Supervisors

A/Prof Jan Coles

Dr Angela Williams

PhD Project Summary

Violence against women appears in virtually every cultureand society worldwide and has been identified as a major health issue requiringimmediate action by several international and Australian agencies. While therelationship of the patient to the perpetrator can vary, a high proportion ofviolence occurs between intimate partners. Research has revealed that thehealth impacts of intimate partner violence (IPV) are broad and oftendebilitating.

No Australianstudies have examined the frequency with which IPV appears in ambulancecaseloads, its impact on service delivery, or examined the impact thatpre-hospital management has on victims and perpetrators. International researchindicates that paramedics often encounter IPV patients yet have a poorunderstanding of IPV and therefore rarely identify them as such. Paramedics areoften the initial contact with IPV victims and are in a unique and perhapscritical position when it comes to the screening, reporting, and management ofIPV to ensure the best outcomes for victims.

I aim to examine the frequency with which Australianparamedics encounter IPV, define their educational needs, and provide a contextwith which future studies can generate screening tools for use in theprehospital environment.

 

Rod Mason

QualificationsMProfEd&Trng(WVET),GradCertOp&DistLearn, DipTAA, DipTAASys, DipBus(FLM).

Email: rod.mason@monash.edu

ProjectTitle
Cognitiondiversity in undergraduate paramedic students.

Primary Supervisor
AssociateProfessor Brett Williams
Head ofDepartment
Departmentof Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice
Faculty ofMedicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Monash University

Co-Supervisors
Dr JohnRoodenburg
SeniorLecturer
Faculty ofEducation,
MonashUniversity

PhDProject Summary
Teachingadults is complex. Different people learn the same things in different ways. For example,people have different ways of internally processing, representing andorganising information, and engaging in learning. Psychological variables suchas learning style, learning preferences, cognitive style and learningstrategies reflect four aspects of individual diversity. Cognition is the broadterm used to describe these mental processes involved in gaining knowledge andcomprehension.

The proposed research, using a mixed methods design, aims to investigate the approaches to teaching undergraduate paramedic students in Australia. A review of literature from Australia has identified that a range of teaching strategies are being deployed and/or recommended to be used in the teaching of undergraduate paramedic students. However, there is little research in current time to confirm what strategies are actually being used in Universities across Australia, and whether the strategies are likely to accommodate the cognition diversity that exists among learners’.  

Daniel Cudini

QualificationsBEx Sci, BEmergHlth (Paramedic), Grad Dip EmergHlth(MICA), MPA

Email: daniel.cudini@monash.edu

ProjectTitle
Prehospital assessment and management of Severe Sepsis and Septic Shock.

Primary Supervisor

Dr Paul Jennings
Deputy Head of Department
Director of Research
Honours and HDR Program Coordinator

Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice
Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Monash University

Co-Supervisors

AssociateProfessor Karen Smith
Manager Research and Evaluation AmbulanceVictoria

Adjunct Associate Professor Discipline
Emergency Medicine, University WesternAustralia.

Adjunct Senior Research Fellow
Department of Epidemiology and PreventiveMedicine, Monash University.

ProfessorStephen BernardSenior Intensive Care Physician: The AlfredHospital
Ambulance Victoria Senior Medical Advisor.

Adjunct Senior Research Fellow
Department of Epidemiology and PreventiveMedicine, Monash University.

AssociateProfessor Karin Thursky
Deputy Head, Infectious Diseases, PeterMacCallum Cancer Centre.

Director NHMRC National Centre for AntimicrobialStewardship Peter Doherty Institute.

PhDProject Summary

Thefundamental principles of sepsis management include early assessment /recognition, control of the source of infection, resuscitation with IV(intravenous) fluids and inotropic drugs. Contemporary management has also highlighted the importance of timelyadministration of broad-spectrum IV antibiotics.This is now considered a quality of careindicator in the management of severe sepsis / septic shock and has significantimplications for paramedics working in the pre hospital setting.
Maintheme:

  • Impactof pre hospital blood culture collection and subsequent IV antibioticadministration in those patients who present with severe sepsis and septicshock.

Additionalareas of interest:

  • Recognitionof SIRS (Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome) criteria in pre hospitalpatients presenting with severe sepsis and septic shock.
  • Prehospital fluid resuscitation in severe sepsis and septic shock.

David PagePhD Student

QualifacationsMS, BA (Hons), NRP

Email: david.page@monash.edu

Project TitleCompetency Measurement in Paramedicine

Primary SupervisorA/Prof Brett Williams

Co-SupervisorsDr. Paul Jennings

PhD Project Summary

Accreditation standards for paramedic training program in the United States and Australia require students to complete an academic course of study in which students must demonstrate “competency” in the cognitive, psychomotor and affective domains of learning.Measurement standards for the attainment of competency are varied and their validity has not been studied.The culmination of most paramedic education is the hospital and ambulance clinical placements. In the US programs must set goals for numbers, ages and types of patient contacts the student must successfully complete. Goals also include attainment of competency as an emergency medical services team leader.Measurement of this attainment is not described in the literature.

Under the previous US department of transportation national standard curriculum (USDOT) programs received a recommended set of national goals. Unfortunately only 8% of paramedic students meet these goals (Salzman/Page 2007).

Since 1996, paramedic programs have been prospectively collecting electronic records of student contacts with patients during clinical placements. More than 10,000 paramedic students have tracked their educationally, using the FISDAP® (Headwaters Software Inc., Saint Paul, Minnesota) database. More detailed analysis of the types and quantities of clinical placement encounters can better inform academic goals and terminal competency measurement.

Talal Mamdouh AlShammari

Talal AlShammari has worked in the field of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) for over 14 Years. His experience includes managing EMS departments, coordinating military missions and disaster coordination in the “Ministry of National Guard Health Affairs” Eastern Region. He has also worked as an EMS Adjunct Lecturer at “King Saud University for Health Sciences” and a lecturer of Emergency Medical Care at “Dammam University”. He holds a Bachelor of Health Science Paramedic, Master of Paramedical Science (Critical Care) and is currently a PhD Student at Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice at Monash University. Talal is also the first to publish a comprehensive history and current status of EMS in Saudi Arabia compared to other countries titled “Evolution of Emergency Medical Services in Saudi Arabia”. Talal was also invited as a speaker at “the 2nd International Paramedic Conference at Jordan”.

QualificationsBhSc (paramedic), MSc (Paramedical Science CC)

Email: tmals1@student.monash.edu.au

Project Title
Familymembers of cardiac patients, how much do they know? And are they willing toperform CPR?

Primary Supervisor
Dr Paul Jennings

Co-Supervisors
Dr Brett Williams

PhD Project Summary

Currently,the leading cause of death worldwide is cardiac arrest, for people over the ageof 40. In a pre-hospital patient with cardiac arrest, the prospect of survivalis very small, except in cases where a lay rescuer starts BLS (Basic LifeSupport) and utilizes an AED (Automated External Defibrillator), which maydouble or even triple survival rates for cardiac arrest patients. As the majorfactor of survival from cardiac arrest, is the availability of a trained layrescuer who is able to implement his/her skills. ALS (Advanced Life Support)techniques may increase the chances and quality of survival, but thesecontributions are generally not as effective as the improvement in the rate ofsurvival that can come from increased rates of lay rescuer CPR and theorganization of AED programs in society. Taking into consideration that 80% ofcardiac arrest events occur in a home setting, the educational endeavour toincrease CPR knowledge should primarily focus on family members and spouses ofcardiac disease patients.

With everyminute the patient is deprived of CPR, his/her survival is decreased by 7-10%.As such, when all medical, social and ethical factors are taken intoconsideration, it is inevitable to face the fact that the family members andpeople, who live with a cardiac patient at risk of cardiac arrest, are the mostconcerned group in providing early pre-hospital CPR. Therefore, studying thecurrent level of CPR knowledge for these patients and family members willprovide an important understanding of the current situation, so as to betterplan the best approach to dealing with the lack of CPR knowledge and provideearly pre-hospital high quality CPR to people who are most likely to sufferfrom them.

The objectiveof this research is to study the current level of CPR (Cardio PulmonaryResuscitation) knowledge of household relatives of cardiac patients and theirwillingness to perform CPR in case of cardiac arrest. This research willcontribute significantly, by identifying the prevalence and characteristics ofCPR knowledge of a major risk group. The study will also improve the currentunderstanding of the willingness of family members to perform CPR on theirrelatives in case of cardiac arrest. Comprehending these factors will helpbuild the appropriate strategy, to improving survival rates and quality of lifefor patient outcome following ROSC (Return of spontaneous circulation). This canbe achieved by providing good quality pre-hospital CPR in the home setting byhousehold family members.

Why do you choose Monash University to study your PhD?

The reason I chose to study my PhD at Monash University, is for its international reputation and the strength of the Emergency Medical Services Program. Currently, Monash is ranked as the 73rd University in the world and the 34th in Medical and Health Sciences. Moreover, the DCEHPP (Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedics) is an amazing Department to work within, the staff are helpful. Also, the Head of the Department Dr. Brett Williams is an outstanding and well-published academic that is always willing to help. Finally, Melbourne is a great city to live in and is ranked as the most liveable city in the world. I am very happy with my decision to study at Monash and would recommend it to anyone.

Justin Hunter
PhD student

PhD Project Summary

Justin is a nationallycertified paramedic and flight paramedic, licensed in the states of Oklahomaand Florida with a heavy interest in teaching entry-level EMTs and paramedicsat the collegiate level. Justin is currently undertaking his PhD with MonashUniversity with ambitions to move the EMS agenda forward in America bypublishing original empirical data related to EMS and EMS education as well asparticipating in National Advocacy activities. I am also a currently activeparamedic in a busy 911-system in Norman, OK. I am dedicated to giving back tothe community through civil service and charitable endeavours. Justin is alsothe founder and President of EMS Success, Inc., a non-profit dedicated toassisting EMTs and paramedics from across America.

Saeed Alqahtani
PhD student

Qualifications
BhSc(Paramedic), MSc (Crit Care Paramedic)

Email:saalq6@student.monash.edu

Project Title
Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest precipitated by non-cardiac causes:Epidemiology, outcomes, and long-term functional recovery.

Primary Supervisor
A/Prof BrettWilliams, Head of Department of Community Emergency Health and ParamedicPractice, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University

Co-Supervisors
Prof Karen Smith, Managerof Research and Evaluation at Ambulance Victoria, Adjunct Senior ResearchFellow Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, Monash University.

Dr PaulJennings, Senior Lecturer Department of Community Emergency Health andParamedic Practice, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, MonashUniversity.

Dr Ziad Nehme,Clinical Researcher with Ambulance of Victoria and an Adjunct Senior Lecturerwith the Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice,Monash University.

PhD Project Summary
Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) is a significant public health problemaffecting over 25,000 Australians each year. Internationally, the proportion ofpatients surviving to hospital discharge is low, ranging between 6.7% and 8.4%.Historically, OHCAs of presumed cardiac aetiology have predominantly been thefocus of research internationally, and have benefited significantly fromoptimisation of the chain of survival. Conversely, OHCAs precipitated bynon-cardiac aetiologies, such as respiratory causes, asphyxiation, drugoverdose and exsanguination, have received comparatively little investigationdespite their growing incidence and poor survival outcomes. The effectivenessof conventional treatment strategies, such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation(CPR) and defibrillation also remain unclear in OHCA populations of non-cardiacaetiology, given the vast majority of arrests present with non-shockablerhythms.

In Australia, there is a lack of information about theepidemiology of OHCAs precipitated by non-cardiac aetiologies. In addition,international reports vary considerably in the incidence and epidemiologicalprofile of OHCA cases precipitated by non-cardiac causes. For example, theincidence rate was 26 per 100,000 person-years with a mean age of 50 years in Finland, while a study from Scotlandreported the incidence rate to be less than half that at 10.5 per 100,000person-years with median age of 67 years. Although several reports fromAustralia have described the epidemiology of OHCA due to trauma, hanging ordrowning, there is comparatively little information on OHCA precipitated byrespiratory causes, asphyxiation, drug overdose and exsanguination. As such,our understanding of the long-term trends in incidence and the epidemiologicalprofile of these populations remains unclear.

In OHCA precipitated by cardiac causes, the likelihood ofsurvival to hospital discharge is typically influenced by prognostic factorssuch as witness status, community interventions such as bystander CPR andpublic access defibrillation, shorter response intervals by emergency medicalservices (EMS) and a shockable rhythm on EMS arrival. However, the value ofthese prognostic factors for determining short-term survival in OHCAsprecipitated by non-cardiac causes is not well understood. For example, aprospective study from Japan involving 187 OHCA patients reported that aninitial shockable rhythm was not associated with one month survival followingOHCA precipitated by drug overdose. In contrast, a Swedish study involving 177OHCAs reported that an initial shockable rhythm was significantly associatedwith one month survival and favourable neurological outcome following OHCA dueto drug overdose. Few reports from Australia and elsewhere have evaluated theoutcomes of OHCA of non-cardiac aetiologies, and existing reports are limitedby small sample sizes and therefore lack generalisability.

There is also growing concern that OHCA patients who survive tohospital discharge experience ongoing functional disability and poorneurological outcomes. These concerns have led clinicians to question thebenefit of prolonged resuscitation attempts in OHCAs precipitated bynon-cardiac aetiologies. Unfortunately, little is known about long-termfunctional outcomes in survivors of OHCA precipitated by non-cardiacaetiology.A small study conducted insurvivors of traumatic OHCA from Melbourne, Australia, reported poor functionaloutcomes at one year follow-up. A recent landmark publication from Victoria,Australia, described the 12 month functional outcomes of OHCA survivors andshowed that most survivors maintained good functional recovery. However, 84% ofcases in that study were of presumed cardiac aetiology, and outcomes related speciallyto non-cardiac aetiologies were not reported. As such, there is a need toinvestigate the long-term neurological outcomes of OHCA survivors fromnon-cardiac aetiologies.

Why do you choose Monash University to studyyour PhD?
Monashis one of the highest ranked universities in the world according to Shanghaiand Times organisations for ranking research and higher education. Inparticular, the Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practiceoffers the best opportunity for those who are interested in the field ofparamedic practice at the level of undergraduate or postgraduate. A highlyqualified researchers, educators or clinicians are available to support youthroughout your learning journey. Importantly, if you are looking to pursueyour PhD in paramedical science, this is the place where you should be. Forparamedics, finding your area of research interest whether clinical,educational or organisational supplemented with the real expertise is adilemma. Here is where you can have your thoughts mature and develop into realproject of high impact and significance.

Susan Irvine
PhD student

Qualifications
MN (Research), Post Grad Dip (Palliative Care),
GradCert. Health Professional Ed. Cardio Thoracic, RN, RM

Email:susan.irvine@monash.edu

ProjectTitle
Explorationof self-regulatory behaviours of near peer teachers: A social cognitiveperspective.

Project outline
Teaching is widelyaccepted as a role of undergraduate nurses in Australia. Somenursing faculties providing opportunities for students to gain teaching experiences,such as through near-peer teaching (NPT) activities. There are many reportedbenefits of NPT, including improved confidence and performance. However, littleif any research has explored the motivational behaviours and self-regulatorystrategies used by near-peer teachers to regulate their performance as theytransition from learner to teacher.

There is a growing body of research indicatingthat self-regulated learning (SRL) plays an important role in academicachievement and successful learning (Kitsantas& Zimmerman, 2002; Pintrich & De Groot, 1990; Turan & Konan, 2012;Zimmerman, 1990; Zimmerman & Kitsantas, 2002;Preece et al., 2015). Studies in nursing examining therelationship between regulatory behaviours and performance, are scarce and nostudies could be located that examine this in the context of peer teaching. In fact, studies are limited to mainly examining peerstudents' performance linked to cognition and self-reporting of peer satisfaction.Therefore, this project using mixed method, will apply the social cognitivemodel of SRL to nursing students at Monash University, to explore SRLbehaviours and performance in NPT.

Primary Supervisor
Professor Lisa McKenna
Adjunct Professor
Nursingand Midwifery
Monash University
Head, Nursing and Midwifery
La Trobe University

Cosupervisor
Associate Professor Brett Williams
Headof Department
Departmentof Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice

 

Ahmad Alrawashdeh

Email: ahmad.alrawashdeh@monash.edu

Project TitleEpidemiologyand management of chest pain and acute coronary syndrome in the prehospitalsetting.

Primary Supervisor
Associate Professor Brett Williams

Co-Supervisors
Dr Paul Jennings,Professor Karen Smith, Dr Ziad Nehme, Dr Dion Stub

PhD Project Summary
Coronaryheart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide and in Australia (1).Chest pain and other symptoms suggestive of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) arecommon presenting complaints in the emergency setting. It is estimated thatover 500,000 patients with chest pain present to the emergency department inAustralia each year (2). Furthermore, chest pain is the most frequent complaintreported to emergency medical services (EMS) (3, 4), and accounts forapproximately 15% of the emergency caseload in the city of Melbourne (5).

The objectives of this research project are:

1. Tocharacterise the epidemiology and incidence of non-traumatic chest painpresenting to EMS in Victoria
2. To describethe variability in prehospital diagnosis, clinical assessments and treatment inpatients presenting with non-traumatic chest pain.
3. To evaluatethe impact of introducing widespread 12-lead ECG capability in Victorianambulances on the identification STEMI and delays in the prehospital timeinterval.
4. To describethe prehospital intervals of patients with suspected STEMI using EMS andidentify factors associated with prehospital delays from symptom onset toreperfusion.
5. To assess theaccuracy of paramedic diagnosis of acute coronary syndrome and its impact ontotal ischaemic time and treatment delays.

Ben Meadley

Qualifications
BAppSci (Human Movement); DipParamediSci(Prehospital Care); GradDip Intensive Care Paramed; GradDip EmergHlth(MICA); GradCert EmergHlth (Aeromed Retrieval)
MPA, MANZCP

Email: benjamin.meadley@monash.edu

Project Title

The relationship betweennutrition, physical activity, wellness and longevity in AustralianParamedics

Primary Supervisor

Dr Kelly-Ann Bowles
Director of Research, 
Department of Community Emergency Health and Paramedic Practice
Monash University

Co-Supervisors

Associate Professor Maxine Bonham
Associate Professor
Department of Nutrition, Dietetics and Food
Monash University

Professor Karen Smith
Director, Research and Evaluation
Ambulance Victoria
Honorary Senior Lecturer
Department of Epidemiology and PreventiveMedicine
Monash University

Dr Luke Perraton
Senior Lecturer
Department of Physiotherapy
Monash University

PhD Project Summary

Over recent years, asignificant area of research into paramedic wellbeing has focused on issuessurrounding mental health. Paramedics are exposed to the range of the humanexperience, and it is imperative that ambulance services care for the mentalhealth of their staff.

There is a paucity ofresearch investigating what role physical activity and nutrition have incontributing to overall wellbeing in paramedics. A requirement for the deliveryof primary and emergency healthcare is to staff such services around the clock;shift work is mandated. Whilst data exist investigating the effects of shiftwork on a range of professions, there is a gap in the literature with regard tohow working as a paramedic may affect the ability to undertake physical activityand access adequate nutrition. Additionally, there is limited evidence tosuggest that regular physical activity, and having access to high-qualitynutrition improves wellbeing in the paramedic population.

This project willinvestigate the impact of shift work on paramedics’ ability to undertakephysical activity and access high quality nutrition, and how this may influencewellbeing and career longevity. Subgroups to be investigated include graduateparamedics, career paramedics with extended time in the profession, andparamedics undertaking highly specialised roles, such and those working inhelicopter emergency medical services.