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Clinical Practice Guidelines

The clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) are the medical policies of BC Emergency Health Services, and also establish the standard of care for out-of-hospital care providers in B.C.
The BC Ambulance Service (BCAS) is operated by BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS), which has responsibility and authority to provide services related to emergency health and ambulance services in British Columbia, excluding those governed by Work Safe BC in the context of occupational first aid.

All guidance provided in the clinical practice guidelines supports thoughtful provision of care by professionals rather than routine following of flowcharts or protocols. Paramedics are continually developing their practice and these guidelines support that journey. All other clinical policy or practice developed by other agencies providing out-of-hospital responder services in B.C. is expected to be consistent with the principles of care and interventions identified in the BCEHS clinical practice guidelines.

Guideline development methodology

The methodology that BCEHS used to develop the guidelines aligns with academic tools designed for guideline development. These tools provide a framework to inform development strategy, assess quality, and identify best practice for how the guidelines are displayed. 

Guideline selection and evidence

BCEHS has developed clinical guidelines to support paramedics in their practice, in line with relevant patient presentations. The evidence that supports practice is based on the database of pre-hospital evidence-based practice hosted by Dalhousie University. BCEHS paramedics and physicians contribute to this project as official appraisers, thus informing our practice. 

Reviews and updates

The most recent version of the BCEHS Clinical Practice Guidelines was released on May 25, 2021.

A committee of representatives from various stakeholder groups, including paramedics, first responders, physicians, and educators is responsible for ongoing maintenance of the guidelines. They will be updated on a biannual basis and accompanied by a comprehensive communications plan to ensure users are aware of major changes.

Access and use

The BCEHS Clinical Practice Guidelines can be accessed free online or via the BCEHS Handbook iOS or Android apps. Please note, some sections of the guidelines are not public-facing because they are only approved for use by BCEHS paramedics following specific BCEHS internal education.

Last updated: January 2020
SOURCE: Clinical Practice Guidelines ( )
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