Part One: Ice Road Paramedics

The road is like an ice rink that hasn’t been cleaned by a Zamboni. It’s a good thing you are wearing your Fort Smith Boots in this sleet storm because the water and freezing slush and ice are treacherous. You walk carefully. The last thing you need is for you or your partner to go feet up in the air, head and butt slamming to the ground.

Memory

The man has dementia to the point he forgets that he called us. He forgets that he went to the hospital yesterday for the same complaint, forgets that they saw him and sent him home, forgets what they told him about it. “You were the one who called them,” his wife says, after he demands to know why we are in his bedroom.

Old Paramedics

My hearing is not so bad that I can’t at a distance hear the tick tick tick of the finite clock that beats for all of us.

You gave her 20 Milligrams?!!

I have decided, be damned, if the patient is still awake, breathing and in pain, just because I have hit my standing order limit, doesn’t mean I shouldn’t call in for more. All I have to do is pick up the radio and ask to talk to a doc. How hard is that?

Paramedics and EMTs

Years ago, I saw a very funny cartoon which showed how people in EMS viewed each other. I don’t remember the whole cartoon, I just remembered how the EMT viewed the paramedic. The paramedic was drawn as Darth Vader.

How to Make Up The Stretcher

Okay, new partner, here’s how I like my stretcher made up…

2010: A Year in Paramedicine

Every medic’s experience is going to be different based on the type of service they operate in, their medical control, the hours they work and the population served. Here then are my 2010 stats.

Death in the ICU

Our primary job is saving lives, but we are also here to provide hope and comfort, and to be present to act in time of need. Showing a family that help was there, that everything possible was done, and then giving them time to gather and say goodbye to a loved one is something to be proud of. It is hard to measure its worth.

Kevin Andrews

Kevin shaped me as a caregiver and as a person. He helped make me who I am today. If I am gentle toward a patient, than Kevin’s spirit is in me, Kevin’s hands are in my own.

An ED Visit

I think when it comes down to it, parents are more concerned with their children’s immediate health than with looking stupid for using the health care system inappropriately. At least that’s the way I leaned when it was decision time. I need to remember that when I’m the one wearing the stethoscope.

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