Pain Relief and Procedural Sedation

Currently Paramedics working at level 1 (The National Standard Paramedic Qualification) can administer certain drugs for pain relief and treatment of convulsions, the guidance for these types of medication is published by the Joint Royal Colleges Ambulance Liaison Committee (JRCALC). These include Intravenous Morphine and Paracetamol for pain relief, and Diazepam for treatment of convulsions. For the majority of patients this is perfectly adequate and provides a high standard of care.

In certain circumstances patients who are in extreme pain and / or agitation, due to severe injury or are suffering from a medical condition, may require additional pain relief and/or sedation. In these circumstances either a Doctor or Critical Care Paramedic (Level 2) who has had specific Critical Care training and working to specific guidelines, can administer certain drugs to relieve pain and if necessary, sedate a patient, such as someone who has sustained serious injuries and needs to be safely extricated from a car following an RTC, but needs additional pain relief to enable a safe movement and to reduce discomfort to the patient. NARS Doctors and Critical Care trained Paramedics can provide this level of care, and support the ambulance service with the management of this group of patients, by administering the drugs on scene and working with the crew, escorting the patient to hospital and providing care enroute as needed.