Perceptions of EMS leaders and supervisors on the challenges faced by female paramedics in Riyadh Saudi Arabia: a qualitative study
journal contributionposted on 17.01.2021, 23:39 by Abdullah Mohammed ALobaid, Cameron Gosling, Lisa McKenna, Brett Williams
PurposeSaudi female paramedics face many challenges in the current Saudi emergency medical service (EMS). This study aimed to investigate perceptions of EMS experts, leaders, managers and academics about the challenges faced by Saudi female paramedics in the Saudi Arabian EMS workforce.Design/methodology/approachA descriptive qualitative research approach was used employing semi-structured face-to-face interviews with seven EMS leaders, managers and academics in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Data were analysed using thematic analysis informed by the work of Braun and Clark.FindingsThree themes emerged from the interviews that described EMS experts' perceptions, namely, cultural and family challenges, the value of Saudi female paramedics in the workforce and workforce issues.Originality/valueOverall, the interviews revealed that Saudi females faced several challenges that could affect their job duties and capacity to work in the EMS. Currently, Saudi females face difficulties with family, social and religious responsibilities, such as taking care of children and homes. Workforce issues were also considered problems that affect Saudi female paramedics in the workplace, such as physical fitness and psychological burnout. The EMS leaders, managers and academics emphasised that due to the new Saudi 2030 vision, it is expected and recognised that more females need to be employed in the EMS workforce.