One reason may be that it can take longer to train a NICU nurse to be a transport provider acting autonomously than to train a medic to work in a NICU and follow standing and direct orders.
Please note that this is a GROSS generalisation, sharp clinicians and dimwits in both professions. But there is a manner of 'cutting to the quick' and isolating essential information and deciding quickly on a course of action / performing invasive skills that is common to good transport clinicians of any background.
And I've met as many ICU nurses who can't make the transition to 'the street' as I have medics who can't transition to 'the unit'
So how about we end the slagging?
So you assume also, that paramedics have some innate ability to react to crises quickly and adapt to new environments that other clinicians do not?
I know this idea is commonly agreed upon among paramedics....but it is highly dismissive of the expertise of others and shows ignorance to the autonomy and critical thinking skills that are required to work in an ICU. As I said in a previous post, this hubris/ignorance is a big part of the reason paramedicine has never gained an equal footing in the greater healthcare community in the US.
No one is saying that just because someone has an ICU background then they will automatically make a good transport provider, but this idea that paramedics are always the best choice just because "they can think on their feet better than ICU nurses" is beyond ridiculous.
The typical paramedic "education" in the US is very brief (less than one year) and very focused on the emergent, pre-hospital setting. They learn nothing about neanoates outside of PALS or (maybe) NRP. They do NO clinical in the NICU. Then they go to work in the field and probably never see a single neonate in the field, or maybe they deliver one at some point.
And we have people who are seriously willing to argue that this background, combined with some special, unique ability to "think outside the box" makes them equally qualified to transport neonates from ICU to ICU as an experienced NICU nurse or NICU therapist?
As I said before...I have no doubt that a good paramedic can be trained to do NICU transports, but it would probably take months of specialized training in the NICU and the classroom to get their knowledge even close to where it need to be to do NICU transports, and after all that they still
wouldn't have nearly as much experience as the RN or RRT who has worked in the NICU for years.
So if a program wants to invest that kind of time and money to bring a paramedic up to speed so that they an do NICU transports, more power to them, and good for the paramedic, that is a great opportunity!
But personally, I just don't see the point, and so far the only explanation has been "because paramedics think on their feet better". That's great. Highly logical and professional of us.