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Table 2 The top five priority research areas with key questions to be addressed

From: The top five research priorities in physician-provided pre-hospital critical care: a consensus report from a European research collaboration

Research Area Key Research Questions to be addressed
Appropriate staffing and training in pre-hospital critical care and the effect on outcomes. This includes the value of physicians in the pre-hospital field. What staffing and training is required to meet the needs of specific groups of critical care patients in the pre-hospital environment?
Is the cost of high-level staffing worthwhile?
Which training methods are successful, and how are the skills maintained and assessed?
Advanced airway management in pre-hospital care: what is best for the patient? What are the indications for advanced airway interventions?
What factors influence the decision to intubate, and what is the physician's role in decision-making?
When should alternative airway devices or conservative airway manoeuvres be used?
Define time windows for key critical interventions which are indicated in the pre-hospital phase of care. How does time to definitive in-hospital care influence pre-hospital decisions, and how do pre-hospital decisions influence the time to definitive in-hospital care?
Do pre-hospital management protocols result in better adherence to evidence-based guidelines in time-critical conditions?
Which clinical situations are time limited or time dependent?
The role of pre-hospital ultrasound. Which ultrasound examinations can be reliably transferred to the pre-hospital setting?
How does pre-hospital ultrasound affect patient management and the patient pathway?
How should providers achieve and maintain specific ultrasound skills?
Dispatch/activation criteria for pre-hospital critical care services. Which criteria accurately identify high acuity patients who require critical care attendance or transport?
Do established dispatch systems efficiently target high-resource services?
What defines under- and overtriage in specific patient groups, and what rates do current systems produce?