Saturday, April 19, 2008

More on the Facts of Life...

... not everyone can or will, always be positively impacted by their encounter with Emergency Medical Services...

"You take the good you take the bad
you take them both and there you have
the facts of life
the facts of life
There's a time you've got to go
and show your grow'n and now you know
the facts of life
the facts of life"

... Theme song lyrics by Alan Thicke, Gloria Loring, and Al Burton

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Paramedic Wanted-Apply Within

I am not even going to use this opportunity to comment on the nationwide- I mean, world wide shortage of paramedics... nope, I just wanted to say- I was surfing the www when I came across this blurb on the Yahoo home page. "Hot Jobs For Night owls"- the photo shows two happy knuckleheads pushing a stretcher occupied by , uh you know a sick dude.
Now qouting below from the web site:
"Connie Meyer, a full-time paramedic and member of the board of directors for the National Association of EMTs. You'll need people skills, basic first aid and emergency care knowledge, and of course, the ability to stay calm in a crisis. "Panicking is OK, but you just need to know what to do with yourself when you do it,""
Again, no comment- well other than to say Meyer is a shit head and the NAEMT could not care less about the sad state of affairs street-side in EMS.

"Panicking is OK, but you just need to know what to do with yourself when you do it,"- Yes my friends, these are the words of a shit head- a member of THE ROYAL ORDER OF THE DINOSAUR- yes we shall discuss this at length as we get to know one another. In the mean time just take it from ol' Uncle Pedro the Paramedic- "Panicking is NOT OK- DO NOT DO IT!!!"
We in fact get paid to calmly and neatly handle situations that yer everyday shit head off the street is unable to handle without panicking.

Here is the link to the post- read it for yourself- if you can:

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Killed in the Line Of Duty

Let me tell you a story about a tragic loss of life right here in my service area...

Three professional firefighters killed fighting a house fire when they were unable to find their way back out.
What happened and how does that affect us?
  • They went inside without a hose line
  • There was no safety line
  • None of them had a radio
  • They stayed in the house so long their air bottles were depleted before they could escape
  • Poor or no accountability- nobody knew they were in trouble till they were dead
So you say- I'm a paramedic there Pedro, how does this impact my job?

When you take things for granted, when your training fails you, when your operating procedures break down in the field, people are put in danger. Medical call, car crash, train wreck, mass incident, even just driving to or from a call- push your luck often enough and eventually somebody will get hurt- or killed.
Don't take the little things for granted. They only get taken care of when you take care of them. Open your eyes, clear your head. Stay safe.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Things That Are Funny For $200 Alex...

... In no particular order and not even EMS related, but to me, funny...
  • When I hear Hillary Clinton babble bad about the last seven years under the regime of Dumb King George - Hey, didn't she vote yes for every dumb-ass thing he's done... yes she did...
  • I laugh, in sad way- like when you see something pitiful, when John McCain, stages something to show how youthful and vigorous he is only to come off looking more and more like the sad, rickety, simple old man he is.
  • When drunks insist on helping the Paramedics
  • I laugh till I cry when my patient is a bulky dude in his 30's, who lectures me on citizen gun rights and self defense whist he is being transported to the ER after shooting himself in the calf holstering his sidearm.
  • I chuckle when drunks admit to "two beers" and only two beers. None of them have ever had more than, yes, two beers... I have a vision of a dude, laying on his back on the sidewalk, propped up on his elbows, soaked in his own piss screaming "Sir, I swear, I only had two beers sir. Sir, why are you laughing at me?"
  • And of course, I have to laugh when they swear they did, swear they did not and call me sir 15 or twenty times.
  • I smirk when I drive past the little road-side monuments that we allow to blossom that commemorate the spot where poor Drunk Johnny met his end.
  • I roar out load when I encounter firefighters on the job- I will pay cash money to go out on a fire call. The comedic high jinks are of the greatest quality and well worth the price of admission. Why, if I had a dollar for... Never mind- I am laughing now- we will make an entire episode or two about fireman follies...
  • And like you, I still laugh when grown men, who should know better, stick one of their only two hands under the deck of a running lawn mower. Ouch, but, come on- funny...
  • I laugh when bystanders, who did nothing while awaiting our arrival, scream at us to "DO SOMETHING!"
  • I try so hard not to laugh when the most hysterical of all the bystanders at an incident runs up, waves their arms and screams, "I'm a nurse!".
  • I do giggle a bit when me ambulance is referred to as "a bus" or "the bus"- though most of our patients really only need a bus- say it- it's true...
  • I smile inside when I get to talk to you, come on- you know...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Women in EMS

... I thought we could perhaps dive right into a controversy. If you have thoughts, please feel free to leave your comments.
... Pedro is associated with a rather large governmental Emergency Agency. As such we are very concerned with and aware of our treatment of "protected groups"- minorities, seniors, and of course women. Now don't think Pedro is intolerant- far from it. I am merely playing the devils advocate here. Based on my observations and from conversations overheard from afar let me make this general statement:
The women who gravitate towards EMS tend to have the most complicated, out-of-control home lives, the least skills, are emotionally unstable and unable to manifest a clinical detachment or an operational mindset, and are just flat out the most disruptive group in the station house day to day.

There, I said it...

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Why I So Rarely Use The Lights and Siren

Walked in the station this morning right at my 0730 start time- I hate sticking the outgoing crew with a late call but I just could not get moving. Poured my coffee and immediately got dispatched for a middle- aged female having chest pain. I'll spare you the war story- mum was having a rather significant inferior wall MI, with really, really big elevations in II,III and aVF. Did I mention the no blood pressure thing? So, off we go, lights and sirens to the ER. Thirty minutes door to door- not bad. Did all the required interventions. Great.
So what could be the problem? Well, found out towards the end of my shift that the patient had laid around down in the emergency room for close to two hours- and then arrested in the cath lab.
Win some, lose some, makes you wonder though.

Welcome to the Real World

... hello, I would like to introduce myself as quietly and as discreetly as possible. I am Pedro- Pedro the Paramedic. I will tell you ALL the TRUTH about the secret world of emergency medicine and public safety- it will not always be easy, it will not always be what you want- but it will be the truth and nothing other than the truth- as I, Pedro the Paramedic see it. Ouch!
And, so you may ask- why Pedro? Well, I carry a great burden you see- in the field of medicine I am a wet-back, though I work hard and do so much good. For I am a lowly Paramedic- a bus driver, a punching bag, and sometimes my dear friends- a life saver. What? Oh yeah, read it again- a LIFE SAVIOR. The only heath care for some, the only ride for some, the only hope for many. Pedro, Pedro the Paramedic.
Do not hate me for the things I am about to share- I am Pedro the Paramedic and what I say is nothing more than than truth, the truth as I see it and, if you choose to participate- the truth as YOU see it.
Please, please, please- our beloved EMS is in so much pain- share your comments here, your hopes and dreams, your thoughts- how can we do better? This is yours, as well as Pedro's- I look forward to hearing from you- I will not under any circumstance edit any LEGITIMATE comment. No matter if you are for or against Pedro.
Now, in the next few days, we will begin. The real truth about EMS, about EMT's, about Paramedics, emergency rooms, doctors, nurses, ambulances- hey- YOU tell Pedro.
I will be here, I will relate what I see, and how I see it- the rest, as always is up to you.
Do not let us down.
I love what I do- but I am afraid of where we are going. Please, please hold my hand. The hand I humbly offer you- the hand of Pedro the Paramedic.
Pedro the Paramedic- the very last beacon of truth, justice and the American Way in EMS today.