San Mateo seemed to have a comparatively more advanced and exciting system than CoCo or Sonoma, for AMR. And, of course, no system is perfect, it's always a work in progress. But I get excited to hear about systems interested in progress, rather than profits.
That's interesting that you wound up out here the way you did. Most tend to deal with what the area has to offer or drive mad commutes. I'm no different. I came out to do an internship at Prevention Point Pittsburgh to finish a bachelor in public health and was just really impressed by all Pittsburgh had to offer, in term of how livable it is and how awesome the harm reduction and healthcare people I met were.
I worked for AMR in San Mateo County as an EMT for 2 years but while I was in medic school I was feeling the same thing you were. I felt like I was working for a big corporation that didn’t really care so much about patients as they did about their bottom line.
Don’t give me wrong, the operation that I worked at was actually pretty awesome but I just could not see myself there for an entire career so I did a bunch of research on different third service agencies in the country. I just always wanted to work for a city or a county. Just randomly on a whim, we started doing some research about Pittsburgh (cost of living, climate, taxes ) And found out that Pittsburgh EMS does things that no other EMS service in the entire country does.
It seems like every agency has their ups and downs, some people will bitch about anything but I have to say I don’t feel supported and valuable here.
Right now it seems like we’re on the upside of the curve. So it’s getting a bit busier out there. Not like NYC or anything, we’re just waiting for it to hit. We have specialty resources on the street 24/7 That are enhancing our regular medic units. We are really aggressive PPE Protocols in place that make me feel safe on every call. We’ll see what this weekend brings.
Thanks for the response, @Richierich31, the system here sounds amazing! I was working for AMR in Sonoma and Contra Costa counties. I love the crews I worked with, but I got really burnt out by the corporate structure. I never felt like AMR had my back or opened meaningful access to opportunities or gave meaningful support.
I'm actually in nursing school at Pitt right now in the accelerated BSN program. I had planned on getting a PHRN after graduation (end of summer, supposedly), then seeing how I could interface with Pittsburgh EMS through that. Then this pandemic came down. I feel a lot of responsibility to be out on the street taking care of people and backing up my brothers and sisters in EMS. I saw that the application portal had opened up, so I submitted one. I was hoping that my timing would get me in before the peak hit here. If it takes 6 months to get in, well, I hope the crisis won't still be happening by then, though I suppose there's only one way to find out. Regardless, it's good to get some insight on the process, and to hear about all the cool aspects of the system here.
A follow up question, how is it out there right now? Pittsburgh doesn't seem to have been hit very bad yet, and I hope it stays that way, but that can be really hard to assess as a bystander. I've been volunteering at UPMC in Oakland, and it seems pretty dead at Presby. Are crews feeling a lot of pressure right now? Are things "normal", or even slow?
Anyway, take care, stay safe out there, always be badass.
We're now wearing eyepro and surgical masks for all calls. If we do any airway stuff above an NC, it's gowns and N-95's.
All pts get a surgical mask.
Since I'm running out of a hospital, we're supposed to be wearing a surgical mask whenever we're inside the building.
Apparently, N-95's are reusable if it was not exposed to any liquids. Not sure how to tell that.
I'm feeling lucky right now. We've gone a couple of days, and the rules haven't changed on us.🙂
If you get into this line of work without understanding what you can get exposed to, you should get another line of work.
I've probably been exposed to so much sh*t that my pts never told me about over the last 30+ years that it would make me have nightmares.