Calm

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When I first became an EMT, a friend asked me why I liked the job so much. When I come through the door, people look at me like I am an angel, I said. What is it like driving lights and sirens? Another friend asked. Awesome — I feel all powerful. I hit wail and […]

Tidying Up

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Twenty years ago when I was looking to buy my first house, my realtor didn’t understand why I did not like the home she was showing me that seemed to meet all my specifications: price, location, size. She did not understand that just two months before I had worked a cardiac arrest there. I could […]

Muscle Rigidity in Opioid Overdose

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I wrote a number of months ago about fentanyl induced chest wall rigidity in opioid overdoses. Chest Wall Rigidity Fentanyl induced chest wall rigidity is rare in the hospital setting, but it should not be surprising to find it is a factor in overdose outside the hospital given that the amounts of fentanyl being injected […]

Manual Versus machine Blood Pressures

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How do you want to be known as a Paramedic/EMT? A. Reliable B. Frequently wrong According to a recent article in JEMS, Ditch the Machine to Improve Accuracy in Blood Pressure Measurement and Diagnostics, “automated blood pressure readings are frequently inaccurate.” Is this a surprise to anyone? Yet, many of us continue to relay on automated […]

Balance

December 8, 2018: This weekend, I am in Worcester, Massachusetts at the New England Short Course Meters Masters Swimming Championships as a member of the Connecticut (CONN) team. Last year, we shocked many of the other teams by taking first place. Points are awarded based on place finish in individual and relay events. Each swimmer […]

Not My Addiction

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This is great film, made by EMS for EMS, to help us understand addiction and the stories behind our patient’s lives.  The 37 minute film tells the story of four addicts in their own words, including one who was once in EMS.  Listening to these four tell their stories helps people understand how easy it […]

Napping in EMS

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Do you nap on your EMS job? While many EMS organizations prohibit sleeping on the job and others allow it only in designated areas, a safety panel empowered by the National Association of State EMS Officials recently issued recommendations that included encouraging napping as a way to mitigate the adverse effects of fatigue. Recommendation 4: […]

Down Time

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A few days ago on our employees only Facebook page, someone posted a picture another person had taken of one of our crews while they were parked by the side of a street. The driver leaned against the window, arms folded, eyes closed.  The passenger had his eyes open, but he was slouched down in […]

Opioid Crisis National Roadmap- EMS Comment

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EMS Encouraged to Comment on Opioid Crisis National Roadmap These are my comments on the draft report developed by the Fast Track Action Committee (FTAC) on Health Science and Technology Response to the Opioid Crisis. People who have suffered a nonfatal overdose are at the high risk of suffering a fatal overdose. A recent study […]

Beautiful Boy: The Book

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In the movies, the hero kills the monster after an exciting and lengthy battle. Then just as the winning team congratulates themselves on their great victory and now bright future, the monster raises its head again. It was not really dead! After a brief but tense battle, in which the hero almost dies, the final […]

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