Sunday, November 1, 2009

EMS Expo: Ambulance technology and purchasing thoughts

So I'm home from EMS Expo and settled in, finally! I was SUPPOSED to post these as I filmed them, but there really was little time and literally almost NO internet connection in Atlanta (that was free, at least). I'm going to play catch up today and blog a little about each segment, if you don't mind

Here are a few ambulances that I shot throughout EMS Expo! I noticed a trend in EVERY rig there, and that was using technology that would help both the patient AND the provider. It amazes that our industry has this potential to advance so much with the use of these tools! I can not wait to see more and more services using this to their advantage. To see the day where it's not about HOW MUCH it costs that determines a company's purchase: but HOW MANY it can save! To all supervisors and owners out there: let's work to move into this mindset! It's not about what we spend, it's about the patients! Think about where we would be had hospitals and doctor's offices had not opened up their wallets for the advancement of patient care. Would MRI's and CT's be available? Probably not. Because we may have never shelled out for X-Ray machines to realize the need and advantages of advanced imaging! So why can't video laryngoscopes, Electric IO's, CPR compression devices, Electronic Patent Care Reports, etc etc be STANDARDS of EMS Care? Just a thought....

Thursday, October 29, 2009

EMS Expo: Podcasting Day 1

I skipped a little ahead in the series to show you guys some of the podcasting footage I captured on Day 1.

These people are AMAZING, by the way! I'll list their links to their podcasts, blogs, and Twitter once I have a little more time.

Booth 507 at EMS Expo is kicking, by the way! I love the medic podcasters more than life! Special thanks to these hardworking people for promoting EMS in a positive light. They work so hard every day to get people more involved with our amazing industry and won't rest until they achieve that goal! So, to those working so hard, I thank you, the EMS industry thanks you, and our communities thank you for raising awareness.

EMS Expo: Travel shot

Here is the video I have been promising on Twitter, my trip from Home to New Orleans airport for EMS Expo! This is the first in the series of blogs I will do with videos from the conference.

It is currently Day 2 here, and I'm just managing to grab some web from the amazing Chris Monterra (@geekymedic), Greg Friese (@gfriese) Ted Setla (@setla) and Chris... (his last name has escaped me... but he's @TheDridge) at their booth at Expo. (Which is my favorite booth! I love the podcasters and crew!

On Expo: I'm going to say this a trillion times in the next few blogs as well, I'm sure. If you are an EMT, Paramedic, EMS enthusiast, the list goes on... coming to Expo is a MUST! The networking opportunities, the amazing sessions, the new friends and experiences are just a few things to come for. We're in Atlanta- so the night life and food is AMAZING!

Here is beginning of my Expo experience!

My trip to New Orleans

Friday, October 23, 2009

Grey's Anatomy and ABC's...

I'm a huge Grey's fan. Don't think anything less of me for that, please. But I love the doctors, I love the procedures, I love the surgeries, I love the drama. True Story. They had a very interesting episode this week- 12 stories about how a patient died under all of their watch. It was supposed to be a big mystery- you were supposed to "watch close," but it really wasn't that hard to catch, at least for us medically minded people. If you haven't seen it and plan on watching, right now is the time I'd stop reading this blog.

Ok. are you fans looking away yet? Good. Now here's the spoiler. The lady that died was in a huge apartment fire, from what I gathered through the confusion. The doctor that is triaging her was distracted and skipped her airway assessment. Now, she was talking, she wasn't hoarse, she had no soot present near her nasal/oral passages but still- there can be edema present without those outward signs. Now, I turned to Grumps, whom was watching solely to try to beat me at the guessing game, and said, "I win." I told him my theory, he went with the blind cric error theory and we watched Seattle Grace battle it out.

Of course, I won. Not that Grumps didn't have a good point with the Cric theory, but it was so obvious it was painful. Talking to my roomate, my mom, and my bowling team afterwards, people not of the medical mind didn't think about the airway. Now, my brother-in-law and med school friend? right on the money. This made me think: there should be better public awareness to how important the ABC's are in emergencies. Far too often, we roll up on accidents and a bystander is holding a bleed like a champ on a patient who is no longer breathing. I just wish more people were exposed to our world. How many lives could be saved if there were an honest to God good, reliable show about EMS out there? Rescue 911 did wonders back in the day, but they only showed the saves. We need a good documentary show.

Which got Grumps thinking. He's a film major, I was a journalism/photography major before my Paramedic training. Why can't we do an EMS show? We know the HIPPA codes etc (he's actually an EMT, too. He just doesn't work as one. He doesn't like people enough for this job.) but man, that's something both he and I would love to do. Hey Steve, maybe we'll go up to Missouri and start the Busbolance project and film it. Are you still in? Haha, one can dream!

Well my friends, I am one sleepy little medic! I have a 4 am wake up!

Au revoir, et À beintôt,


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Random thought of the night

Some of you know: I have an on again, off again, on again, off again relationship with Grumps. We bowl together on Thursdays and I usually give him a ride there. Well tonight, we passed up a medical office building of an Ear, Nose, and Throat doctor. He looks at me and says, "Why didn't they ever come up with a more professional name for that?" We discussed this for the better part of 2 hours. He came up with "Craniolyologist." I just laughed at him. I told him ENT was good enough for me.

He also said, "Well, a butt doctor is a Podiatrist. He gets a fancy name. Why not the ENT?"

yes. he called the Proctologist a Podiatrist. This is why I'm not ever carrying on his genes. True Story.

But none the less, it was quite an interesting conversation.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Day off!

So, I'm off again today, but it'll be an early night since I report for a 24 tomorrow morning not so bright and very early at 0530. I think I'm going to clean house and watch episodes on Hulu. I was SUPPOSED to go to a refresher course today, but my Paramedic friend giving the course has the flu. It was cancelled. I'm a wee bit sad about that... I miss being in school and this is the closest I get to that kind of setting. Sure, in about a year you'll all hear me complaining about being back in school... but for now I miss it. Oh, I'm going back to school to finish my Bachelor's and applying to Med School. If it's a no go on Med School, then I'm going into Physician's Assistant. Specialty? Toss up between Peds and Emergency Medicine (duhhh). We'll see when the time comes.

Well, mes amis, my Fruity Pebbles are calling my name and Glee, Ghost Hunters, or Grey's Anatomy won't watch themselves!!

Au revoir, et À bientôt!


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Warning: New Medic blogger on the run

Well, I'm an avid Twitter user ( @MsParamedic ). Most of the medics that I follow on Twitter all have Medic blogs, most of those bloggers are advocates for more EMT's and Paramedics to jump in and blog as well. So, here I am... diving into the blog world. Now, I've never truly blogged for reader purposes, I once had a livejournal account as a teenager so I could vent. I was full of teenage punk rock angst. Well, off subject- back on track now. I was a journalism/photography major in college before I went to EMT school, so I do LOVE to write and always have.

Well, I guess that since this is my first post as MsParamedic, I should give a proper introduction. My name is Natalie, I'm 22 and a loud, proud little Cajun! I've been an EMT since 2006 and a Paramedic since 2008. I have a great family. By that I mean parents, a half sister and bro-in-law, her half brother and his wife, and all of their kids. I have 5 nieces (another one the way) and 3 nephews. I also have 2 dogs, Alice and Jasper, and a hamster, Esme. Yes, I love Twilight. Don't judge me. In fact, I love MOST books. Fiction, Non-fiction, informational pamphlets, graffiti on bathroom walls, the list goes on.

Now to the meat and potatoes. I'm a Paramedic that works for a small company. That company is like an extended family. We fight and bicker some days, the next we're side by side elbow deep in blood, and then we're back at the station pranking each other and telling stories about "The Good Ole Days." At our service a unit consists of an EMT and a Paramedic. As a unit, we run both ALS calls and BLS calls. Any call that is considered an emergency, whether it is a headache x 3 years, a stubbed toe, or cardiac arrest, the Paramedic runs. The BLS transfers are ridden by the EMT...sometimes. I'm very short so my EMT's usually say, "but Natalie, you were built to fit back there. My legs hurt." Some days, I say no but on most days I smile and jump in the back.
At my company, I'm the baby whisperer. If my crew goes on a "9 months pregnant, having toe pain" call, she's most likely going to deliver while I'm there. Anytime there is a pediatric call and my unit is available, they send us on it. At my service, there is an abundance of rough, scary looking men. Not always kid friendly, as you can imagine. But the 5'2" chick with the goofy smile? Oh yes, she's kid friendly, mom approved. I may not have kids of my own, but being an aunt and godmother has given me Mommy instincts for sure.

Calls that my dispatchers are hesitant to send me on? Prison calls and domestic abuse situations. Because already in my short career, I've been stabbed my a prisoner with my own 14g needle and have been locked in a room with an abusive husband that we thought was no longer on scene, punched in the face by a psychiatric regular, urinated on by neighboring inmates while working an OD in a prison cell, and tackled by a man on PCP. I have terrible luck, but that will never discourage me from doing my job, and doing it correctly and efficiently.

Proof of said luck? As I type this, I am sitting on an ice pack. Why? Because yesterday while I was on standby at a rodeo, a bull rammed me in the derrière with his horns. Many of you are probably saying: "well, she has no sense of scene safety. It's not bad luck." Wrong. In all of my situations, they were fluke happenings. All of those scenes were covered by the police department or (in case of the rodeo) professional bull fighters.
Well, here is how the rodeo incident went down. My partner and I were behind the shoots in a gated area. If I bull rider were to need assistance, we could exit out of this gate and into the arena once the bull was behind the labyrinth gate. Well, it was a quiet event. The last bull and rider were paired and the kid put up a great effort. But when he tried to dismount, his hand was caught in the bull rope and he fell directly under the bucking beast. Luckily, he had on a helmet and a vest. I watched the bull enter the labyrinth gate and the gate closed behind it. I ran out to see if the kid was alright. He had stood up after the assault, walked to the fence, and was sitting on the ground looking dazed. I was halfway to the kid when the bull backed out of the gate. Because the staff was so worried about the kid, they hadn't properly secured the gate. So there I was, facing this bull. Mind you, looking back it's funny. Our company has red shirts and hoodies. It was like we were asking the bull to maim us. I grew up on a farm, rodeo'ing with most of these boys' brothers and sisters, riding bulls like the rest of them. My partner had never seen a bull ride on TV before today. I looked back and yelled, "Run!" I had previously instructed here that if anything were to happen in the arena to always run UP, not across. "Jump on the fence and climb. They don't have thumbs so they can't follow you up there. But they have 4 legs so they can out run you across," were my exact words of advice. Well, she ran... across. So the beast runs at me and I ran at him. Bull fighting 101, once he's close enough to you, make a sharp turn close to his body and get him running circles. So, the crowd is watching your favorite little 5 foot medic run at this 2000 pound bull and as he gets close to me, I turn and go to run up the shoot. It happened fast, my foot slipped and his horn hooked my lower back, but it gave me the boost onto the shoot I needed. Just as I was about to jump in the shoot, I realized that this shoot was occupied by another bull so I prayed that the loose bull didn't realize how big of a pickle that I was in. When I turned around, the horseback cowboys had roped our bull. My partner was holding her face. Initial reports by her were that the bull kicked at her, she shielded her face and looked away, and it hit her in the jaw. Looking back at footage, it was the gate that gave her the kick in the face. She lost a tooth. The bull rider was just fine, by the way. The horseback cowboys had saved us from further damage and I thanked them all the way back into our unit.

Well, I think that now you should have a pretty good idea of who I am and what I do. I look forward to blogging with you all in the time to come. But for now, I need to get off my rump because I literally can't sit for another moment!

Au Revoir mes ami! À bientȏt,