Tuesday, June 20, 2006
If you look at EMS realisticly it's pretty simple. The whole process of Emergency Medicine is simple: You see a problem and you correct it. I like to relate it back to the old BASIC programming days of the TRS-80 and the Commodore C=64.
IF the patient cant breath THEN we check the airway.
Almost every single problem in any given circumstance can be over come with simple logic, remember it is not the EMT's job to "cure" the patient. It's the EMT's job to get them to the doctor alive and as stable as we can. Long term care is left up to the doctors and nurses. It simply is not our problem. The reason I bring this up is because I'm tired of the following:
You arrive to a patients house, they cant breath. The have a history of COPD. A breathing treatment later and some high flow O2 and your on your way to the hospital. Yes I know all about the respitory drive of COPDers, I don't care. It's not my job to worry about the long term care of these patients. At the hospital you are met by a nurse that receives your report and then snatches the non-rebreather off your patient lightning fast. I don't have a problem with them doing this, but I do have a problem with them assuming they know my job and glaring at me as if I have done something wrong.
Sir/ma'am It is your job function to give this patient continuous care, and get them to a point that they can return back to their residence, it was my job to get them to you alive. If their respirtory drive would have magicaly dropped out in the 15 minutes I had the patient, I would have tubed them. I would be doing my job maintaining this patients life and once again you would have to provide for their continuing care.
I WILL NOT deny my patient the O2 they need to sustain their life, because of a "maybe". If I don't give this patient O2 they will die. If I give the patient O2 nd it knocks out their respirtory drive the I will tube them and breath for them, but they wont die.
All I ask is respect the part we EMTs play in the grand scheme of things and we will respect yours. Don't assume because a rule is steadfast for you it's the same for us. Most of the time it's not.
Posted by Zer0 at 12:33 PM