Improving emergency medical services for children with special health care needs: does training make a difference?

Am J Emerg Med. 2001 Oct;19(6):474-8. doi: 10.1053/ajem.2001.27146.


This study evaluated the impact of a paramedic training program on emergency medical services (EMS) responses for children with special health care needs. EMS responses for children with a congenital or acquired condition or a chronic physical or mental illness, were reviewed. Responses, related to the child's special health care need, involving paramedics who had completed our training program were compared with responses with paramedics not participating in the training. There was significantly more advanced life support treatment for responses with paramedics completing the training program compared with other responses. However, there was no significant difference in transport to a hospital or in-hospital admission between these 2 groups. This finding suggests that existing EMS protocols may play a more important role in emergency treatment and transport of children with special health care needs than specialized training of already certified paramedics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Allied Health Personnel / education*
  • Child
  • Child Health Services / standards
  • Diagnosis-Related Groups
  • Disabled Children*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Patient Admission
  • Program Evaluation
  • Transportation of Patients / standards*