Emergency Care Providers are responsible for providing pre-hospital advanced life support and rescue services to critically ill or injured patients. This involves gaining access to the patient, often in hostile environments, providing emergency medical care and stabilisation in the field, and ensuring their transportation by whatever means to the most appropriate medical facilities for definitive care and onward management. Emergency Care Providers usually operate in an Emergency Medical Service (EMS) system which is an integral component of any national health structure and their duties may also include the transportation of patients between different specialised health care facilities locally, nationally and internationally.
The Department of Emergency Medical Care & Rescue has both a national and international reputation in the education of high-quality, professional Emergency Care Providers who are well sought after across the globe. The department currently offers the Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHSc) and the Bachelor of Technology (BTech) degrees in Emergency Medical Care and has developed a robust post-graduate programme offering the Master of Health Sciences in Emergency Medical Care degree and more recently the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Emergency Medical Care. Graduates of the Bachelor degree programmes may register to practice within the highest level scope of practice of the Emergency Care Practitioner (ECP), an autonomously practicing clinician, with the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA).
The department of Emergency Medical Care has as its vision, mission and core values:
To be a student-centred department that advances emergency medical care through excellence in education and research.
To excel in education and research by:
- Evidence based education in emergency medical care, and
- A values driven ethos,
- Sustainable partnerships with industry, the community and society,
- Research in emergency medical care, and
- Staff and students to succeed, and
- Departmental sustainability.