Dr Scott Munro

Lecturer in Paramedic Practice
PhD, PGDip, BSc (hons)


Areas of specialism

prehospital emergency care; staff wellbeing; Implementation of innovative technology

University roles and responsibilities

  • Lecturer in Paramedic Practice

    My qualifications

    PhD in prehospital emergency stroke care
    University of Surrey
    PGDip Healthcare practice (Prehospital Critical Care)
    St George's University of London
    BSc (hons) Paramedic Practice
    University of Surrey

    Affiliations and memberships

    College of Paramedics
    Member of the College of Paramedics

    Business, industry and community links

    South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust
    Critical Care Paramedic for the South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust


    Research interests


    Ollis L, Skene SS, Williams J, et al, on behalf of the SEE-IT Trial Group (2023) The SEE-IT Trial: emergency medical services Streaming Enabled Evaluation In Trauma: study protocol for an interventional feasibility randomised controlled trial

    Introduction Accurate and timely dispatch of emergency medical services (EMS) is vital due to limited resources and patients’ risk of mortality and morbidity increasing with time. Currently, most UK emergency operations centres (EOCs) rely on audio calls and accurate descriptions of the incident and patients’ injuries from lay 999 callers. If dispatchers in the EOCs could see the scene via live video streaming from the caller’s smartphone, this may enhance their decision making and enable quicker and more accurate dispatch of EMS. The main aim of this feasibility randomised controlled trial (RCT) is to assess the feasibility of conducting a definitive RCT to assess the clinical and cost effectiveness of using live streaming to improve targeting of EMS.

    Methods and analysis The SEE-IT Trial is a feasibility RCT with a nested process evaluation. The study also has two observational substudies: (1) in an EOC that routinely uses live streaming to assess the acceptability and feasibility of live streaming in a diverse inner-city population and (2) in an EOC that does not currently use live streaming to act as a comparator site regarding the psychological well-being of EOC staff using versus not using live streaming.

    Ethics and dissemination The study was approved by the Health Research Authority on 23 March 2022 (ref: 21/LO/0912), which included NHS Confidentiality Advisory Group approval received on 22 March 2022 (ref: 22/CAG/0003). This manuscript refers to V.0.8 of the protocol (7 November 2022). The trial is registered with the ISRCTN (ISRCTN11449333). The first participant was recruited on 18 June 2022.

    The main output of this feasibility trial will be the knowledge gained to help inform the development of a large multicentre RCT to evaluate the clinical and cost effectiveness of the use of live streaming to aid EMS dispatch for trauma incidents.

    Munro S, Cooke D, Joy M, Perciato L, Smith A, Poole K, Holah J, Spiers O, Quinn T (2022) The pre-hospital 12-lead electrocardiogram is associated with longer delay and worse outcomes in patients presenting to emergency medical services with acute stroke: a linked cohort study

    Objectives: To investigate the association between pre-hospital 12-lead electrocardiogram (PHECG) use in patients presenting to emergency medical services (EMS) with acute stroke, and clinical outcomes and system delays.

    Methods: Multi-centre linked cohort study. Patients with verified acute stroke admitted to hospital via EMS were identified through routinely collected hospital data and linked to EMS clinical records via EMS unique identifiers. Ordinal and logistic regression analyses were undertaken to analyse the relationship between having a PHECG and modified Rankin Scale (mRS); hospital mortality; pre-hospital time intervals; door-to-scan and door-to-needle times; and rates of thrombolysis.

    Results: Of 1161 eligible patients admitted between 29 December 2013 and 30 January 2017, PHECG was performed in 558 (48%). PHECG was associated with an increase in mRS (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 1.30, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.01-1.66, p = 0.04) and hospital mortality (aOR 1.83, 95% CI 1.26-2.67, p = 0.002). There was no association between PHECG and administration of thrombolytic treatment (aOR 1.06, 95% CI 0.75-1.52, p = 0.73). Patients who had PHECG recorded spent longer under the care of EMS (median 49 vs 43 minutes, p = 0.006). No difference in times to receiving brain scan (median 28 with PHECG vs 29 minutes no PHECG, p = 0.32) or thrombolysis (median 46 vs 48 minutes, p = 0.37) were observed.

    Conclusion: The PHECG was associated with worse outcomes and longer delays in patients with acute ischaemic stroke.

    Whitley G, Munro S, Hemingway P, et al. (2020) Mixed methods in pre-hospital research: understanding complex clinical problems

    Healthcare is becoming increasingly complex. The pre-hospital setting is no exception, especially when considering the unpredictable environment. To address complex clinical problems and improve quality of care for patients, researchers need to use innovative methods to create the necessary depth and breadth of knowledge. Quantitative approaches such as randomised controlled trials and observational (e.g. cross-sectional, case control, cohort) methods, along with qualitative approaches including interviews, focus groups and ethnography, have traditionally been used independently to gain understanding of clinical problems and how to address these. Both approaches, however, have drawbacks: quantitative methods focus on objective, numerical data and provide limited understanding of context, whereas qualitative methods explore more subjective aspects and provide perspective, but can be harder to demonstrate rigour. We argue that mixed methods research, where quantitative and qualitative methods are integrated, is an ideal solution to comprehensively understand complex clinical problems in the pre-hospital setting. The aim of this article is to discuss mixed methods in the field of pre-hospital research, highlight its strengths and limitations and provide examples. This article is tailored to clinicians and early career researchers and covers the basic aspects of mixed methods research. We conclude that mixed methods is a useful research design to help develop our understanding of complex clinical problems in the pre-hospital setting.

    Gavalova L, Halter M, Snooks H, Gale C, Weston C, Watkins A, Munro S, Davies G, Hampton C, Driscoll T, Rosser A, Rees N, Black S, Quinn T (2019) Use and impact of the prehospital 12-lead ECG in the primary PCI era (PHECG2): protocol for a mixed-method study

    Introduction Use of the prehospital 12-lead ECG (PHECG) is recommended in patients presenting to emergency medical services (EMS) with suspected acute coronary syndrome (ACS). Prior research found that although PHECG use was associated with improved 30-day survival, a third of patients (typically women, the elderly and those with comorbidities) under EMS care did not receive a PHECG.

    The overall aim of the PHECG2 study is to update evidence on care and outcomes for patients eligible for PHECG, specifically addressing the following research questions: (1) Is there a difference in 30-day mortality, and in reperfusion rate, between those who do and those who do not receive PHECG? (2) Has the proportion of eligible patients who receive PHECG changed since the introduction of primary percutaneous coronary intervention networks? (3) Are patients that receive PHECG different from those that do not in terms of social and demographic factors, or prehospital clinical presentation? (4) What factors influence EMS clinicians’ decisions to perform PHECG?

    Methods and analysis This is an explanatory, mixed-method study comprising four work packages (WPs). WP1 is a population-based, linked-data analysis of a national ACS registry (Myocardial Ischaemia National Audit Project). WP2 is a retrospective chart review of patient records from three large regional EMS. WP3 comprises focus groups of EMS personnel. WP4 will synthesise findings from WP1–3 to inform the development of an intervention to increase PHECG uptake.

    Ethics and dissemination The study has been approved by the London-Hampstead Research Ethics Committee (ref: 18LO1679). Findings will be disseminated through feedback to participating EMS, conference presentations and publication in peer-reviewed journals.

    Munro SFS, Joy M, de Coverly R, Salmon M, Lyon R (2018) A novel method of non-clinical dispatch improves accuracy and consistency of Helicopter Emergency Medical Service tasking


    Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS) are a scarce resource that can provide advanced emergency medical care to unwell or injured patients. Accurate tasking of HEMS is required to incidents where advanced pre-hospital clinical care is needed. We sought to evaluate any association between non-clinically trained dispatchers, following a bespoke algorithm, compared with HEMS paramedic dispatchers with respect to incidents requiring a critical HEMS intervention.


    Retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data from two 12-month periods was performed (Period one: 1st April 2014 – 1st April 2015; Period two: 1st April 2016 – 1st April 2017). Period 1 was a Paramedic-led dispatch process. Period 2 was a non-clinical HEMS dispatcher assisted by a bespoke algorithm. Kent, Surrey & Sussex HEMS (KSS HEMS) is tasked to approximately 2500 cases annually and operates 24/7 across south-east England. The primary outcome measure was incidence of a HEMS intervention.


    A total of 4703 incidents were included; 2510 in period one and 2184 in period two. Variation in tasking was reduced by introducing non-clinical dispatchers. There was no difference in median time from 999 call to HEMS activation between period one and two (period one; median 7 min (IQR 4–17) vs period two; median 7 min (IQR 4–18). Non-clinical dispatch improved accuracy of HEMS tasking to a mission where a critical care intervention was required (OR 1.25, 95% CI 1.04–1.51, p = 0.02).


    The introduction of non-clinical, HEMS-specific dispatch, aided by a bespoke algorithm improved accuracy of HEMS tasking. Further research is warranted to explore where this model could be effective in other HEMS services.

    Munro SFS, Rodbard S, Ali K et al. (2016) A pilot study evaluating the use of ABCD2 score in pre-hospital assessment of patients with
    suspected transient ischaemic attack: experience and lessons learned

    Background: Suspected transient ischaemic attack (TIA) is a common presentation to emergency medical services (EMS) in the United Kingdom (UK). Several EMS systems have adopted the ABCD2 score to aid pre-hospital risk stratification and decision-making on patient disposition, such as direct referral to an Emergency Department or specialist TIA clinic. However, the ABCD2 score, developed for hospital use, has not been validated for use in the pre-hospital context of EMS care.

    Methods: We conducted a pilot study to assess eligibility criteria, recruitment rates, protocol compliance, consent and follow-up procedures to inform the development of a definitive study to validate the ABCD2 tool in pre-hospital evaluation of patients with suspected TIA.

    Results: From 1st May-1st September 2013, nine patients with an EMS suspected diagnosis of TIA had the TIA diagnosis later confirmed by a specialist from five participating sites. This recruitment rate is comparable to stroke trials in the EMS setting. Bureaucratic obstacles and duplication of approval processes across participating sites took 13 months to resolve before recruitment commenced. Due to the initial difficulty in recruitment, a substantial amendment was approved to modify inclusion criteria, allowing patients with atrial fibrillation and/or taking anticoagulant therapy to participate in the study.

    Conclusions: It is possible to identify, recruit and follow up patients with suspected TIA in the EMS setting. Training large numbers of EMS staff is required as exposure to TIA patients is infrequent. Significant insight was gained into the complexity of NHS research governance mechanisms in the UK. This knowledge will facilitate the planning of a future adequately powered study to validate the ABCD2 tool in a pre-hospital setting

    Munro SFS, Cooke D, Kiln-Barfoot V, et al. (2015) The use and impact of 12-lead electrocardiograms in acute stroke patients: A systematic review

    Background: Stroke is a leading cause of mortality and disability across the globe. Emergency Medical Services assess and transport a large number of these patients in the prehospital setting. Guidelines for UK ambulance services recommend recording a 12-lead electrocardiogram in the prehospital environment, providing this does not add to significant delay in transporting the patient to hospital; however, this recommendation is not based on any evidence.

    Methods: A systematic review was conducted to search and synthesise the literature surrounding the use of prehospital electrocardiograms in acute stroke patients, focusing on the prevalence of abnormalities and their association with prognosis and outcome. Online databases, references from selected articles and hand searches were made to identify eligible studies. Two authors independently reviewed the studies to ensure eligibility criteria were met. Main outcomes were presence of abnormality on electrocardiogram, mortality and disability. No studies set in the prehospital environment were found by the search; therefore the eligibility criteria were widened to include hospital-based studies. A total of 18 studies were subsequently included in the review.

    Results: Although the prevalence of electrocardiogram abnormalities appears common in hospitalised patients, their prognostic impact on mortality, disability and other adverse outcomes is conflicting amongst the literature. There is a lack of research surrounding the use of prehospital electrocardiogram in acute stroke patients.

    Conclusion: Future studies should be based in the prehospital environment and should investigate whether undertaking an electrocardiogram in the prehospital setting affects clinical management decisions or has an association with mortality or morbidity.