Paramedic Health and Wellbeing

Unit code: HFB3202 | Study level: Undergraduate
(Generally, 1 credit = 10 hours of classes and independent study.)
St Albans
HFB2223 - Clinical Practice 4; and
HFB3130 - Paramedic Clinical Science 4 (Mental Health and Mental Illness); or
HFB3004 - Mental Health and Illness
(Or equivalent to be determined by unit coordinator)


This unit aims to provide students with the resources to help them manage and optimise their own physical and mental health. Content includes research findings on the mental health and physical health of paramedics and how it compares with the general population and other occupational groups. The content of this unit also includes the bio-psychosocial model of health and how it might be utilised in the understanding of mental health issues. The physical and psychological health effects of shift work and effects on sleep are covered as well as aspects of sleep hygiene. Topic areas covered with respect to nutrition and exercise include key concepts of metabolism, diet and the shift worker and lifelong health supporting choices. Other topics include depression, anxiety, stress, health behaviours, substance use and abuse, psychosocial modifiers of stress, suicidality, and the basics of cognitive behavioural approaches. The culture of the ambulance service will also be explored including positive, negative and ethical behaviours. A model of resilience is introduced as a framework to provide the tools to help students to manage their reactions to demanding events and situations.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Analyse key health and wellbeing topics relevant to paramedics and extrapolate how they relate to models of health;
  2. Determine strategies to optimise their own mental and physical wellbeing;
  3. Assess reactions to a demanding situation using a model of resilience and appropriately modify those reactions; and
  4. Formulate a view on how social contexts, including the workplace culture of ambulance services, influence mental and physical health.


For Melbourne campuses

Assessment type: Assignment
Grade: 15%
Resilience Project: Part A, individual written assignment (700 words)
Assessment type: Presentation
Grade: 20%
Resilience Project: Part B, group presentation
Assessment type: Assignment
Grade: 35%
Paramedic Wellbeing Blog (1700 words equivalent)
Assessment type: Test
Grade: 30%
MCQ Assessment (60mins)

Required reading

Selected readings will be made available on VU Collaborate.

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following course(s):

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