Everything you read here should be considered fiction. Patient rights will always be respected. Any resemblance to persons living or not is purely coincidental.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Anchors and the Light

Big surprise, I'm an incredibly sparky newbie.  So I'm having to catch up on my blog reading - I cannot just go to a blog like Happy Medic's and read from today on.  I have to start at the beginning and work my way to the present.  Hence, you will likely see links to a bunch of old posts in my blog, but believe me they are worth the read.
So come on, gentle reader, you and I might just dig up some good things here.

You need to read: The EMS Anchors by Happy Medic

Finished? OK.

I haven't been around much.  Been making runs with the 'old crew' for just a few months now, but I have run into these people.  Frankly, they scare me.  (And I piss them off, I'm pretty sure.)  We are a relatively small group out here, managing a constantly fluctuating population that sees 2+ million guests per year.  But we're rural, and most visitation arrives in the summer.  But with that many potential patients we cannot afford to be lax in our continuing education and quality of care.

Most of our anchors are not paramedics, but EMT-I level practitioners.  They can be in charge of complicated scenes, though, and should be better at what they do.  They should, for instance, not sling and swath a collarbone fracture then proceed to walk that patient out on a trail to the ambulance over a mile away.  That's just not right.  They should not take C-spine precautions by placing a collar on someone, but then attach that person to a backboard in a position of comfort.  That's not right, either.  The anchors need to follow protocol, not flaunt it because of their ignorance.  They need to learn to use the incident command system on a regular basis, not just when the incident gets "too big."  These are not difficult things, are they?

This small group (thankfully small) sets a bad example for us First Responders and EMT-B's.  We are their grunts.  They know better than us and we need to just shut up and do what they say.  We are there to drive them in comfort to the hospital and get the ambulance shiny and stocked for the next run.  We make mistakes and are reprimanded for them on-the-spot, in front of the patient or our co-workers.  Are the EMS Anchors also the ones Ambulance Driver is talking about here?  Sure sounds like it to me.

Thankfully, I work with a great group of EMT-B's and 2 excellent paramedics, Mr. Medic and Ms. Medic.  They are what a preceptor should be.  Mr. Medic has been around.  He's been doing this job since before I graduated high school and is not only excellent at his job, but cares about the teaching as well.  He leads weekly classes for continuing education.  Ms. Medic is similar, although only a few years in this paramedic thing.  They are both working to get an EMT-B course put together for our area.  How cool is that?

So you will see a great difference in those runs I get to go on, depending on who is on shift at the time.  Just the way things are done here.  I'm going to take Happy's article and leave copies in conspicuous places.  Just in case.

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