Paperwork? Paperwork?

Busy day, five calls all in a row, three transports and two refusals. My ambulance is down for service so I’m working in another one. The medic who works in that one reguarly has the cabinets locked with pull ties so he doesn’t have to check the shelves unless they’re broken. I check my gear — everything looks in order.

We always keep a couple refusals in the house bag so if the call turns out to be a refusal we don’t have to go traiping back out to the ambulance to get the run box.

The call is for a woman who has fallen and hurt her hip. She is in her nineties and has no family members. She describes her pain as terrible and winces when I palpate her hips. I give morphine before we move her, and she is now, as she says, quite calm.

We get her out to the ambulance no problem, then I can’t find the run box. No where to be found at all. I open up the house bag to get one of the backups we keep in there. Used them both up on the refusals. I break open a tab on the cabinet where I usually keep extra paperwork. There is no paperwork there. Not a run form on the ambulance.

I look at my partner. There is no family going with us, no one following. The patient is resting quite comfortably, eyes closed, feeling no pain. What do say, you swing by the bay on the way out of here. It’s not but a couple minutes out of the way. No one else is back at the bay. The place is empty. My partner knows where the run forms are. There’s a big box under the desk in the office.

When we arrive at the hospital, my paperwork is done. No one the wiser.

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