What is a Paramedic

Paramedicine Role Descriptors

Paramedics Australasia has developed a set of paramedicine role descriptors to provide an introduction to the current clinical roles within Paramedicine in Australia and New Zealand.  This work covers the broad classifications of professional, technical and communications streams of practice.

Due to the current absence of national regulation in Australia, the scope of practice for individuals engaged within Paramedicine varies between jurisdictions, practice settings and engaging organisations.  The different legislative frameworks in Australia and New Zealand give rise to local variations in practice such as, for example, controlled substances legislation.

A paramedic serving in the Australian or New Zealand Defence Forces operates in accordance with the activities for which they have been given the authority to perform. This is determined by the individual’s education and competence, the environment in which they practice and the requirements of the relevant defence service.

For those seeking employment within paramedicine it is important to be aware that each organisation sets its own employment criteria and selects applicants on merit.

The clinical roles currently found within Paramedicine are described below.




A full document of descriptors can be downloaded HERE.


Australian Qualification Framework Council, 2011, Australian Qulifications Framework, 1st Edition 2011

New Zealand Standard (NZS 8156:2008) Ambulance and Paramedic Services standard

New Zealand National Ambulance Sector, Clinical Working Groups, Clinical Practice Guidelines 2011-2013

SA Ambulance Service, 2009, Enterprise Agreement 2007 – Schedule 2 – Classifications, Pages 40-50

Paramedics Australasia would also like to thank the below parties for their invaluable assistance in the development of these descriptors:

  • Australian Defence Force**
  • Council of Ambulance Authorities**
  • Major Brendan Wood
  • Mr Gary Strong
  • SA Ambulance Service**

** this document has not been subject to formal endorsement by any of these organisations.