Spare Change

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I see Maria outside the Spanish market, squatting against the building. She is a tiny woman in her fifties who was introduced to heroin thirty years ago when she was living in New York. The father of her son used it occasionally and when he used, she was obligated to sniff some as well. It […]

Supraglottic Versus ET

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“EMS personnel and physicians involved with protocol development for EMS systems in the United States, United Kingdom, and similar settings with limited exposure to advanced airway management should reconsider the routine use of endotracheal intubation as the first-line strategy for airway management in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.” This is the conclusion of an editorial in the […]

Connecticut Overdose Death Numbers

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The opioid overdose epidemic continues to rage in Connecticut, although numbers again show the carnage may be plateauing. The Connecticut Medical Examiner’s Office just released the overdose death numbers for the first six months of 2018. Connecticut Medical Examiner’s Statistics  515 people died in contrast to 500 and 538 in the two previous six month […]

A Walk in the Park

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  A walk in the park to stretch the legs while on post. The medic walks past a row of port o-potties from a weekend event. One port-o-potty is not fully closed.  A sneaker blocks the door door. On second glance the sneaker is attached to a foot. Open the door and an unresponsive man […]

The Opioid Chapters

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Check out this web site to read about eleven people affected by the opioid crisis, including a paramedic who injured his back on the job. The Opioid Chapters

Water

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The next drug to add to the EMS formulary should be water. That’s right. H20. How many times have you been on a call and the patient has asked for water only to be told by every EMS responder in the room, “No! You can’t drink anything!” Really? The reason we don’t let people drink […]

Fentanyl: The Real Deal

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Misinformation and inconsistent recommendations  regarding fentanyl have resulted in confusion in the first responder community. – Fentanyl Safety Recommendations for First Responders (Revised) from the Office of National Drug Control Policy. It seems every week responders are getting exposed to Fentanyl, being rushed to the hospital, with many getting Narcan, all often without exhibiting any symptoms […]

Safe Injection Sites

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I wrote an op-ed this month that was published by the Hartford Courant. Insight: I See What Heroin Does. Let People Shoot Up Safely Included was a checklist: 5 Things to Know About Heroin Addiction I read an article a few days later that said that when called an “overdose prevention site,” as opposed to […]

Epinephrine in Cardiac Arrest

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The use of epinephrine in prehospital cardiac arrest showed no difference versus placebo in determining favorable neurological outcome according to a long awaited randomized controlled study published yesterday (July 18, 2018) in the New England Medical Journal. The trial showed epinephrine produced a higher rate of survival at 30 days than placebo, but that was […]

Veins

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Kelly is as dispirited as I have seen her. “My veins are shot,” she says. “I can’t even get high.” IV users use 1 cc syringes which have a very small needle they only need to slip inside the vein. When they pull back and get blood they know they are in. They push the […]

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