Without evidence of benefit, an intervention should not be presumed to be beneficial or safe.

- Rogue Medic

Comment on Is EMS Research Provincial by Dr. Russi

Also posted over at Paramedicine 101. Go check out the rest of what is posted there.

In response to Is EMS Research Provincial is this comment by Christopher S Russi

I am one of the co-hosts from a new podcast called Standing Orders (emsstandingorders.com) and I am the associate director for prehospital research at the Mayo Clinic.

The Standing Orders podcast looks sounds great. Only one episode, so far, but on a very important, too often ignored, topic – Sepsis.

We may think that we do not see much sepsis, or that we may not have much of an ability to affect the outcomes of septic patients, but their debut podcast should change our minds. Go listen.

I will write some more about the sepsis podcast. I look forward to more great podcasts from everyone at Standing Orders.

While I haven’t heard the entire podcast by Dr. Wesley, what you posted needs clarification. To answer your question about location of research and validity, it depends.

There are a few types of validity. Likely what Dr. Wesley is referring to is called external validity. Better understood in this way: can what was done via the methods be replicated in my current situation / system? Further, you have to understand the population where the intervention was delivered and the inclusion / exclusion criteria used for the subjects. As you can imagine, it is imperative that you read the methods section with a critical eye and consider the confounding variables taken or not taken into account.

These are important points and critical to understanding all research.

So while the location of the research has to be taken into consideration for comparison with your own environment, it does not mean that it serves as a litmus for throwing away data or considering it useless.

Exactly. While there may be important differences between the way EMS is provided in the US versus another country, there are plenty of differences even among the ways EMS is delivered in the US.

A well done study done in another country may be designed and carried out much better than similar studies done in the US.

I think that is part of what Dr. Wesley was getting at, just expressing it in passing during a podcast that covered a lot of different aspects of how to read EMS research. Reading EMS Research: EMS Research Episode 3

I am much more interested in the way the research was done, than I am in where the research was done. Sometimes the different levels of providers, in other places, can help us to learn something about the way EMS might be improved by better educating our providers, or the claims that doctors would not be able to intubate as well as paramedics, if they were working in the same environment.