HLT51020 – Diploma of Emergency Health Care

HLT51020 – Diploma of Emergency Health Care

The HLT51020 – Diploma of Emergency Health Care has now replaced the HLT51015 – Diploma of Paramedical Science. There are still 17 Units of Competency to complete within a 24 month time frame. Students of the Diploma of Emergency Health Care will still be able to attend 2 x 7 day clinical workshops and a 40 hour block and 120 hour block of clinical placement in the community.

The new HLT51020 – Diploma of Emergency Health care name change focuses on some of its core Units of Competency (UOC) being updated. Predominantly, this reflects the future demands of the emergency health care industry in Australia.

Updates to the following Australian Paramedical College qualifications and some Units of Competency have been approved:

Background to the update to the Health (HLT) training packages

A ‘Case for Change’ (incl renaming Diploma of Paramedical Science to Diploma of Emergency Health Care) was submitted by SkillsIQ, because of a request by the Ambulance and Paramedic Industry Reference Committee (IRC), to the Australian Industry and Skills Council (AISC) in 2018, seeking to undertake an update of the nationally recognised Pre-hospital and Out-of-hospital Training Package Products included in the HLT Health Training Package.

This new Case for Change was approved by the Australian Industry and Skills Council.


The paramedical sector is becoming increasingly focused on equipping frontline paramedical staff with the tools to manage the future challenges of the industry. Patient care is becoming more demanding because of societal changes brought on by rising socio-economic problems which stem from the influences of substance abuse, alcohol and mental health-related occurrences.

Workforce issues, including mental health & wellbeing and resilience:

sterile gloves in use paramedic training

The new qualifications have been revised to include Units of Competency focusing on;

  • communicating with patients who present with challenging behaviours; and
  • managing personal stressors in the work environment

The Unit Communicate in complex situations to support health care has been updated and improved to be more about communication than care. The Unit is focused on working with people and patients who present with a broad range of mental health challenges rather than specifically those with the traditional view of mental health. The changes also reflect how dealing with complex situations on the job is increasingly common when not in an emergency setting. The revised Unit will be rolled out across multiple qualifications in the scope.

Units HLTAMB001 – Follow procedures for routine safe removal of patient and HLTAMB002 – Implement safe access and egress in an emergency (old package Units of Competency) have been combined because they had similar topics and covered skills which are needed by all workers.

This combined Unit will now be referred to as
HLTOUT001 Implement safe access and egress. (new diploma)

HLTAMB011 – Manage a routine non-emergency scene and HLTAMB013 – Contribute to managing the scene of an emergency have also been combined into one Units. This combined unit is now titled: HLTOUT008 – Manage a scene.

HLTAMB010 – Manage and coordinate resources for emergency operation
has been rewritten to focus on major incidents involving multiple casualties where emergency health care workers may need to work on their own and manage patients for a considerable length of time. This update concentrates on scene management and clinical components rather than office-based scenarios. This updated unit is now titled HLTOUT009 Manage the scene of a major incident.

Regulation and Registration
Since compulsory registration for Paramedics was introduced back in 2018, all Paramedics are required to obtain a Higher Education bachelor’s degree qualification. The Units in this new package update comprise the only non-degree national qualifications for other support workers in the prehospital and out-of-hospital sectors.

The IRC has agreed that these qualifications continue to have relevance to first responders and emergency health support staff, particularly those in remote or offshore locations.

Find out more about the HLT51020 – Diploma of Emergency Health Care here.


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