Archive for May2008

The Gear (Oops)

I wrote recently about screwups with the gear. Equipment(Brain) Malfunction This just proves there is always a new chapter. I checked out my monitor the other day, doing a quick eyeball, BP cuff, monitor leads before checking the battery, doing the user test, and then opening up the back and top compartments for check for […]


I want to compliment myself because I took a vow quite awhile back that I would stop whining about all the bad things in this job, and I think I have done a pretty good job of it lately. When you start letting things like lengthy triage waits and pompous health care providers (whether hospital, […]

Just a Paramedic

Baby Medic asks in his most recent post Routine about the frustrations of the mundane in EMS: I would like to know how those who have been doing this job for a long time are able to withstand the mundane. Do they no longer live for the exciting calls? Are they content to relax in […]

Book News

This morning’s New York Times has an excellent review of Shannon Burke’s novel “Black Flies.” In recent days I have heard from a number of paramedics and EMTs who have read the book and they have all given it a thumbs up. I recommend it. Black Flies: Blood and Guts *** British EMT blogger Tom […]

The Asshole

I‘ve been called an “Asshole” by a patient two days running now. I guess I have to reluctantly plead guilty in the first instance. The second, I’m not ready to admit it yet. Here’s how the calls went down. *** The first was for a diabetic, altered level of consciousness. 40-year-old man lying in bed […]

Trauma Room

I’ve been bringing quite a number of patients to the trauma room lately. You get hurt in a routine motor vehicle accident, you end up in a regular room in the ED or probably even more likely, a bed in the hallway until they can clear your c-spine, get you off the backboard and send […]

Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science

I’m reading an excellent book, Complications: A Surgeon’s Notes on an Imperfect Science. First off, the author is a great writer. The book is thoughtful, easy reading and hard to put down. Second, while written by a surgeon much of it is very relevant to the world of EMS. Among his subject matter: Mistakes by […]

The Future of Intubation

I recently taught the bougie station at an airway class for ED physicians. While there I got to sit in on an excellent airway lecture and play with some of the other airway devices in the hospital’s difficult airway cart. There was a vendor there from King Systems helping demonstrate a new product of theirs […]

Spring Cleaning

In the spirit of Spring cleaning, I am giving this blog a new look. I have decided at least for the time being to strip the blog down to its basics. For a week or so I had a revolving carousel of books at the top banner head that I thought was very nifty, but […]

The Church Lady and the Ambulance Attendant

The woman heard a pop as (twisting) she tried to help her (stumbling) mother out of her wheelchair and into the church pew. The pop came from the woman’s knee and she crumpled in pain. She screamed again as we tried to pivot her on her good leg onto our stretcher. The entire congregation turned […]

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