Mr Andrew Webber
Lecturer in Paramedic Science (Education)
School of Health Professions (Faculty of Health)
As a lecturer within Plymouth's paramedic science team, Andrew is primarily responsible for promoting high standards of learning for pre-registrant paramedic students. His role includes developing students' practical skills (eg. physical exam techniques, resuscitation), alongside fostering other important skills (eg. clinical decision making, critiquing and utilising evidence to improve practice). He is also responsible for developing registrant paramedics who choose to undertake post-registration study at Plymouth.
Before joining the university in 2013, Andrew worked with the local NHS ambulance service. He began as an ambulance care assistant in 1999, qualified as an ambulance technician in 2002 and then as a paramedic in 2005. Whilst working in the NHS, Andrew completed a BSc(Hons) in emergency care, before undertaking an MSc in health & social care research. In 2018 Andrew adopted a part-time role with the university, which has enabled him to practise with a GP network in Plymouth for two days each week. He practises as an independent prescriber in that role (for more on paramedic independent prescribing, visit the College of Paramedics' site). When able, Andrew continues to practise in the NHS ambulance service as a specialist paramedic (urgent/emergency care).
As recognised in Hampton's (2003) 'Guidelines - for the obedience of fools and the guidance of wise men' piece, not all patients 'fit' into guidelines. Andrew has a keen interest in using evidence, pragmatism and patient choice to support individual patient's unique situations.
Roles on external bodies
- External-examiner for the University of East Anglia's (UEA) BSc(Hons) & DipHE Paramedic programmes from 2013-2017.
- During 2015-16, worked with the College of Paramedics' Postgraduate Curriculum Development Group to develop curriculum guidance for UK paramedics.
- Reviewer for Health and Care Research Wales (formally the National Institute for Social Care and Health Research: NISCHR).
- External adviser for the major review of the Public Services portfolio at University of Wales Trinity Saint David during 2016.
- External adviser for the PgCert Simulation in Health and Social Care at the University of Salford in 2017.
- Andrew has consulted for non-NHS UK ambulance services to improve medicines governance.
Andrew's teaching interests include developing paramedic students' clinical examination skills (eg. assessment of core body systems using the traditional medical models) and cognitive skills (eg. clinical decision making, analysis of ECGs).
Andrew acts as a research supervisor for undergraduate paramedic students; as well as supervising those undertaking the MSc Pre-hospital Critical Care Retrieval and Transfer.
The undergraduate projects have included:
- a survey of students' preparedness to practise
- an observational study comparing handling techniques to limit hip movement
- inter-rater reliability of the FLACC pain score between student paramedics and student paediatric nurses
- cross-over trial comparing the efficacy of commercial and ad hoc tourniquets to arrest low limb circulation
- cross-over trial comparing the effect of patient gender on AED pad placement by untrained responders
- an observational study of paramedic students' ability to assess for and interpret signs of postural hypotension
- test-retest reliability of tympanic thermometers
Naloxone for heroin overdose: an audit of one UK ambulance service, May 2015
Poster presentation at College of Paramedics Prehospital research Conference 'Questions at the Cutting Edge of Emergency Care', Hatfield, UK. Download poster at http://tinyurl.com/PlymParaNLX.