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Found 6 results

  1. Three days ago I had my first clinical experience. The first patient of the day was a transfer to a nearby hospital. I didnt learn anything from it except I hate transfers. We were just pulling back into the ambulance station and we got dispatched to a house fire. You could hear in the 911 operators voice that it was no joke. Turns out, there was a 4 year old boy in the house. We got there and the smoke was just pouring out of the windows and even standing 40 feet away it was very hot. We didn't know that there was a child in the house until a firefighter started frantically yelling for a medic as he emerged from the flames. The paramedics I was with grabbed the boy and took off running for the ambulance. They were joined by two other medics and the boy was rushed to the hospital. He was in PEA and one medic administered cpr while another was giving him Epi via IO and another medic suctioned his airway and intimated him. There was nothing for me to do except grab things from bags and cabinets when they were needed. When he got to the ER I couldn't really understand what was going on. Everyone was gathered around him talking over each other. When he went 7 more minutes without a pulse they called it. Not a single person in that room left with dry eyes. I walked out to see both of the paramedics I was with crying. My mom (a nurse in the ER) looked at me from across the room, and I just broke down. I'm having a really hard time dealing with this. I can't stop thinking about him, his family, the paramedics I was with. I've been trying to spend time with family and friends to take my mind off it but it's so hard. I'm not sleeping well and I've completely lost my appetite. I'm only really eat so my parents don't worry. It's so hard for me because everyone in my life is just going about business as usuall and I'm sitting here feeling like this and I just don't know how to deal. Does it ever get better? Or will I always have him in the back of my mind? I'm supposed to start a fire recruit program in a few weeks but I'm starting to question if I'm cut out for EMS. I handled the situation well while it was happening. And one paramedic said that they were impressed with how cool and collected I was especially considering it was my first patient. I don't feel so cool and collected anymore.
  2. Earlier this year, I ran a call involving an patient who was well known in certain communities. The call was an obvious DOA (so the individual has long since deceased). The investigation around the death ended months ago and the patient's information and background (his career, etc.) was released to public for news stories. Now that I'm back at the university, I have the opportunity to present a project in one of my classes that revolves around this patient's research (the research the patient did during their career). All of this is legal, of course. The patient, prior to the incident, was a renowned researcher and has accessible files all over the web. My presentation will ONLY involve this patient's research because that's what's relevant to the class. But the main reason I wanted to do a project on this research was because it hit home for me so much, due to the fact that I ran this call. My main question is can I LEGALLY say that I was on scene after this individual's death? The purpose is to give reason for why I wanted to cover this research topic in that class. If the information about his death is known publicly in the news, is it a HIPAA violation for me to say that I was there? I'm not planning on giving any details about what I saw on the scene or after the scene. All of the information that I have outside of the fact that I was present after the death comes from stories that are from website articles (already released to the public). I just want to avoid any legal trouble for mentioning that I was there. Does anybody have an idea about this? I'll also apologize if I posted this to the wrong forum. I am new here!
  3. So I watched my boyfriend's mum die on Monday early morning. It was peaceful, and calm, and she went surrounded by family. But I was uncomfortable the whole time. Because I knew things they didn't. I saw things they didn't. Smelled, heard, felt... you get the picture. We showed up for an afternoon visit and she was unresponsive, resps 32, labored, snoring. Cool to the touch, but diaphoretic. Mottling to the extremities. And for me little flags are going off about what's happening to her body. But boyfriend's family is talking about the real estate market, or shopping or work drama. We get called in the night because the nurses think it's almost time. When we show up she's agonal breathing, and I'm watching the apneic periods grow longer. And his family is talking about what a hassle the cab to the hospital is in Canadian winter. Her breathing changes and it's smooth and unlabored, but still fast and shallow. And I try to tell them "Her breathing is changing. I don't think it will be long now." To encourage them to actually notice the person dying in front of them. Boyfriend steps out to use the restroom. Breathing is slowing, even more shallow now and so I say "I'm going to give you privacy to share with her." And I leave the room to call boyfriend because I know that she has only moments. He didn't make it back. They all commented about how they wish they'd held her hand, or told her they loved her. And boyfriend beats himself up about missing the last moments. In my job I don't spend hours watching people die. Minutes at most, maybe. And I'm always working to benefit the patient. Slow their death, ease pain, etc. I'm sure a ton of us have experienced something similar, where your work brain can't turn off when there's a personal medical event going on. I didn't know how to just be girlfriend and shoot the sh*t and comfort and try to understand someone else's pain. I was stuck with work frustration and helpless. I guess I'm wondering if anyone has had a similar experience they'd share? And how things went in the following days/weeks? Because I am lucky to not know personal loss, or grief. So I'm lost as to how to be supportive for an emotion I know nothing about.
  4. I'm a Medic student in Texas and have just this past week I've ran two calls in which the patient past away. These where my first experiences to death in EMS. I really thought i would be more affected by their deaths, but i havent been. Maybe becaue I didn't know them before or never even heard them speak(both were tubed and out before I even saw them). On one call the patient's family was allowed into the room while the team was performing CPR. I like the fact that the doctor let them be in the room for closure. What are some of y'all's feeling on end of life treatment and family involement?
  5. My dad had a great sense of humor. He showed me many times the value of being able to laugh at yourself and the world around you. When he was diagnosed with late stage prostate cancer, one of the first procedures he had was a bilateral orchiectomy. I'll save you from looking it up, it's the surgical removal of both testicles. (because it feeds the cancer) I was there when they wheeled my Dad out of the operating room after the procedure. He gave me a dopey, post general anesthesia grin and asked the surgical nurse, "Was it a boy or a girl?" She laughed and said, "You had twins, honey." He chuckled, "Yea, I bet they l looked a lot alike." Now this is a man who didn't smoke...anything...never took anything stronger than an aspirin, didn't drink heavily, and minutes after having his first general anesthetic, he has the presence of mind to fire off a primo joke about just having his nuts lopped off. That, Ladies and Gentlemen, is what's called, a sense of humor. I miss you Dad.
  6. I was lucky to have a good EMT instructor when I took my EMT-B class. He was fantastic full man with years of experience and good morals. He’s a fair, wise, knowledgeable and an all around nice guy. Yet he had a UN canny knack of teaching us the little things a text book could not possibly print. One thing he told us was that you will get to know your partners on the truck better than your best friend or even your spouse. I work with a fantastic couple of partners at the Ambulance Service, I spend more time with them then I do with my girl friend it seems. In EMS you entrust your life to your partner for the good the bad and the crazy. People outside of EMS don’t understand this for the most part sadly. You have to work as a team to get the job done during a shift and when the crap hits the fan both of you have to be cool calm and collected. However some people are better to work with then others as life goes. You and your partner have to be in perfect communication and sink. If you’re not your heading for an accident or major risk to your life. My time in the Military thought me this well however a single EMT class does not prepare a lot of EMTs for this. One day I and my partner were doing a normal transfer and it all went wrong in the blink of an eye. I won’t go into details since I don’t want to name names or the specifics for legal reasons. The root cause of the problem was mistrust and lack of communication. Needless to say we had a major incident where my partner broke down in a very bad way that adversely affected the health and welfare of a patient and betrayed my trust. In an instant I found the training I received in my EMT class kick in like clockwork or a backup generator. Just like that I did a full head to toe trauma assessment and I was solely caring for this patient. The reason only I was caring for this patient was because I had to send my partner back to the truck to calm down and regroup since said partner was lost. In the end the patient was cared for and taken care of in a professional way. After the call and the mountain of paper work a something like this generates I sat down with my partner and talked about what went wrong. Sadly my partner was blaming the whole things on me and claimed outlandish things about me during the call to supervision. I maintained the truth and was 100 percent honest about what happened. This served me well with my co workers and supervisors in the after math and subsequent investigation. I never thought I would have a partner betray the fundamental trust we as EMS professionals have in each other. It’s a sad day when your partner who has more experience then you as an EMT lets you down in a major way. This bothered me in a major way for a long time after this call, my partner was openly joking about the call to people and was seemingly happy about what happened with made me even more UN happy. I am just glad I had the proper training and skill to provide outstanding patient care in times of extreme duress. I also learned a valuable lesson of how to properly communicate with my partner to make sure were 100 percent on the same page before, during and after any call. It’s so easy to rush and muddle though a call and just get it done but it does not always do good things for your patient. In the end my experience and EMT training served me well. It’s impressive during times of extreme duress when your training kicks in like a machine. For that I have my EMT instructor to thank many times over without you I would not be the fine EMT I am today.
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