It's called THE EMS, like The FBI, not like The CIA.
I'm taking over EMS. I'm turning it into a national organization, and renaming it The EMS. New uniforms will be issued, black shirts and trousers, with a big yellow EMS in capitol letters emblazoned on the back, an American Flag on the left shoulder, and a Department of EMS patch on the right. Each and every member of The EMS will be trained as a Paramedic.
All ambulances will be black, with a million flashing lights and reflective materials. In place of sirens Metallica's And Justice for All will play on a continuous loop. The interior will be comfortable, and each and every unit will be identical, and kept to the standards set forth by The Department of EMS, as directed by the director. Equipment will be state of the art and provided by the federal government, and distributed through the network of police and fire departments in each jurisdiction.
There will be no rank in the field, every crew member will be equally proficient in all areas of emergency medicine and transport. New members will be trained at CIA headquarters in Quantico, Maryland, in a newly designed EMS training facility. Only when a candidate successfully completes the training will he or she join the ranks in the streets.
When a person calls for The EMS, a response team will be sent, the emergency sized up following the newly developed 911 Emergency Call Directive, patients triaged and treated and the appropriate agencies notified. Fire and police departments will be under the direction of The EMS, and will carry out the commands of The EMS without delay. The EMS will be ultimately responsible for the patient that needs emergency care, as dictated by The EMS on scene. Those patients who called for The EMS and had no reason to do so other than to take advantage of the altruistic nature of our land will be issued a citation and fine. Those unable to pay the fine will be placed into a pool of candidates whose primary purpose will be to provide comfort to The EMS, and clean The EMS quarters and apparatus. When offender has successfully completed three (3) bodily fluid cleanups they will be released, and the next candidate will begin their sentence.
Applications are now being processed. Salary upon completion of the obligatory eight month indoctrinization program will begin at $85,000 annual salary, with full health care (15% co-share of policy) matching 401K, three weeks vacation time and four uniforms, which will be replaced at the rate of one every six months. Sick time will be allowable under similar criteria of the 911 callers directive.
Please send applications to me, at this address for consideration.
Thank you, that is all.
That is not All!
From The Director:
If I can do it, so can you.
You can figure out what you're doing, and show up with a store of knowledge that can actually help somebody in a crisis. Basic stuff. Give them some oxygen. Recognize CHF from an asthma attack. Stop the bleeding. Don't give D-50 to pregnant people. Carry diaphoretic people who are clutching their chest down the damn stairs.
You can treat people with respect, whether they deserve it or not. Make no mistake, not everybody deserves it. But by disrespecting them, you are disrespecting us, the rest of the people who show up every day, put on the uniform and do the damn job.
You can listen to people. Especially family members who happen to love the person you were called to help. You don't know a person's history. You don't know about their addictions, prior heart surguries, stents, fistulas or anxiety levels. You don't know a thing about them. So listen while you observe, and treat the patient to the best of your ability, always leaving room for adjustments. Because if you can't treat a person as an individual, you may as well plant yourself in front of a book or computer screen and read about those of us who who can.
You can stop acting like god's gift to the medical community. Nursing home nurses operate in an enviornment far different from ours. Ridiculing them because they didn't start an IV the correct size, or start an Albuterol treatment makes you look like an idiot, and I really don't care if that's the way you operate, but you make me look like an idiot as well.
You can drive the rescue, or ambulance efficiently, intelligently and safely. Blaring the horns and sirens and driving like a maniac just because you can is no reason to do so. People react differently to stress. Give them a second to move, you will be amazed at how many do so. Scaring the shit out of them causes nothing but problems.
And remember, you represent all of us every time you answer the call. Act like a professional and you will be treated accordingly.
And so will the rest of us.
*disclaimer: the nicest patient told me while in the back of the rescue about the "last one who came," and how she made the her feel small, and worthless, and worse than before she called. And here I thought we were supposed to make people feel better. Silly me.
PSA # 1 From THE EMS Director
Important, life saving information regarding minor motor vehicle accidents!
-If you are tapped from behind and there is no damage to your vehicle, it is okay to wave it off and drive away
-When the EMT asks if you are injured, and you answer "I'm not sure," you are not injured
-You do not have to go to the hospital by rescue to pad "your case."
-Having you car towed from the highway is a pain in the ass
-Faking an injury is not as simple as it seems
-The trip to the ER will hurt more than the collision
-Lying backwards on a hard board with your head in a vice in a box truck sucks
-16 guage IV's hurt
-Coaching your children to say it hurts borders on child abuse
-You will not "get in faster" because you came in the rescue
-You will go to the back of the line, and then wait for the people who came in after you, because the "ambulance drivers" know the people at triage, and they will tell on you
-Going to the ER without an injury, "to be checked" is utterly absurd
-Karma is a Bitch
Remember, Buckle Up!
PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT # 2
Ice is slippery.
That is all.
PSA # 3 From THE EMS Director
There has been an influx of unconsciousness associated with Government issued public assistance monies. Symptoms include, but are not limited to:
ATTENTION ALL PROVIDENCE RESIDENTS AND VISITORS
An epidemic has descended upon the Capitol City. If you are a grown man, between the ages of forty-five and fifty-five you are particularly at risk. All others use caution as well, symptoms have appeared in persons both male and female, between the ages of seventeen and ninety-six.
-strong aroma of ETOH on person
-obnoxious behavior prior to unconsciousness
The epidemic appears to target the indigent population. Areas surrounding homeless shelters appear to be the hardest hit.
The latest information from the CDC shows a direct correlation between affected parties and the electronic transfer of taxpayer money to their accounts. Symptoms can take ten minutes to several hours to manifest into unconsciousness. It is suspected that once funds are extracted from area banks, either the currency or the subsequent purchase of substances are the cause of this emergency.
All area hospitals are at peak capacity. Emergency services are on high alert. Please stay indoors and avoid public places until this emergency passes, likely around the fifth of the month.
Thank you for your cooperation
PSA # 4 From THE EMS Director
10 Questions before dialing 911:
The people who bring you 911, in an attempt to streamline and improve our public service commitment have developed the following questionnaire. Please post in a conspicuous place, preferably next to the phone. In the event of a true emergency, disregard this, and CALL 911!
One or more "yes" answers means DON"T CALL!
10- I don't have a ride
9- I get in faster if I go in the amb-u-lance
8- They let me lay down while we drive
7- I'm "not sure" if I'm bleedin
6- I just want to be "checked."
5- Pretty lights and sirens make me happy
4- I need the stitches out-cast off-wrapper unwrapped
3- My 'pointments at ten, the ER will give me a pre'pointment
2- I "think" I'm shot
and the number one clue that you probably didn't need to call 911
1- "I ain't going to "that" hospital. Take me to "this" hospital or I ain't goin!
PSA # 5 From THE EMS Director
I'm feeling a bit omnipotent today, must be Spring Fever. I figure I'd share some wisdom gathered through the last eighteen years. It's worked for me, most of the time.
10 Simple Steps to EMS Success
An incompetent EMT is a useless EMT. Know the basics. Practice. Read. Get better. Every patient deserves competent care. Provide it.
People watch. Everything we do is scrutinized. If they must watch, give them something of value to watch . You are setting an example to everybody on scene. Make sure it is an example to be proud of.
Lead, follow or get out of the way. Sometimes you have to lead. When it's your turn, do it well. People need direction, especially in an emergency. Take control.
Lead, Follow or Get out of the way. Too many cooks kill the patient. Following orders is just as important as giving them. And, if you need to get out of the way you are in the wrong line of work!
5. Know Thy Patient's Name
Say it. Even if they are unconscious, seizing, having a stroke or dying. It brings comfort to the family, comfort to the provider and eases the patient's anxiety.
6. Know Thy Place
We are not doctors. We are not gods. We are people trained to provided emergency medical services within the parameters of state protocols.
7. Less is More
Stabilize. Make comfortable. Transport.
8. Be Nice
People call us because they are looking for help. They are not looking for lectures. Or contempt.
9. Be Cool
No matter what happens around us remember, during the call you, your crew and your patient are the center of the universe. Nothing can rattle you if your scene is secure.
10. Be Excellent to Each Other
George Carlin told this to Bill and Ted after their Excellent Adventure, and it stands true in every aspect of life.
From The Director: Clean the Truck!
One day it smells like pickles, the next it smells like ass, at times dirty feet…I'm tired of sharing, I want my own truck.
Clean the rescue ya mutts!
From The Director: New Refusal Form
Refusal Form (Revised)
I,_____________________ (EMT Name) representing _______________________(Agency Name)
on ___________________ (Date of accident, "injury") have assessed the scene and patient and do hereby refuse to treat or transport because: (check appropriate field. More than one checks is acceptable)
__ Patient is on cell phone and ignored responders when approached
__ Patient actively hiding something in trunk upon EMS arrival
__ Patient over dramatizing injuries to the point of absurdity
__ Patient cannot possibly be injured regardless of what The Law Firm states on their daytime television spots.
__ Zero mechanism of injury combined with patients mechanisms of running around accident scene negates and legitimacy whatsoever.
__ Patient is obviously full of shit.
I hereby release myself and all other responders from litigation and disciplinary action as a result of my refusal to participate in the ongoing fraud and weakening of the general public's moral fiber by the combined forces of unscrupulous law firms, medical facilities, physical therapy businesses affiliated with aforementioned unscrupulous law firms and medical facilities, body shops and whoever else profits from the sweat and labor of the nations emergency responders who spend more time than you could imaging boarding and collaring people who think they hit the lottery because some poor slob tapped into them.