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Should EMTs Have to Babysit Their Medics?


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Suze you are articulate, intelligent and passionate. If you've been around the site for a while, you will see that this basic/paramedic argument has been rehashed infinitum... Girl it's not personal. No one is attacking you for being an EMT - we all started that way. The problem is the EMS system in general. In mosts part of the country, the system is a mess. People are being hurt and are dying because of the way it is organized and like it or not - basic, volunteer and fire based EMS are a big part of this problem. The fact that you (and NOT you personally but YOU as in anyone with 120 hours of training and a license) can jump into an ambulance and do stuff to sick and dying people is wrong wrong wrong wrong. I'm glad that you find it fulfilling - I wonder if the patients that die because the system does not get the resources to them in a timely fashion find it the same... hang around girl - it is refreshing to hear articulate and reasoned discourse BUT try and understand why we feel the way we do - and if you can't, maybe you need some more education.. that's all we're saying.

and PS... poor form is low on the list of bad things when people are dying that don't have to.

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...and PS... poor form is low on the list of bad things when people are dying that don't have to.

You know what's funny. One of my medic instructors was a retired ER doc, and when she taught there were things that were 'poor form'. Poor form = causing death, being an idiot, making decisions because you're lazy, missing simple, but vital, parts of a procedure, etc. Anything that a proud provider would be ashamed of in the future was poor form.

For example, early on I diagnosed Vtack instead of properly identifying Torsades. Treated the Vtack and killed my pt. Heard, "Oh Dwayne, Poor form." No yelling, or insulting, but I left that class committed to never making the same mistake again. She was one of those terribly smart, passionate teachers that never attacked anyone. You just always wanted to do well to prove to her that you were worthy to be in her class! (At least I did) She was awsome.

Not arguing your point of course, that's just one of those things that struck me hard in medic school.

Dwayne

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You know what's funny. One of my medic instructors was a retired ER doc, and when she taught there were things that were 'poor form'. Poor form = causing death, being an idiot, making decisions because you're lazy, missing simple, but vital, parts of a procedure, etc. Anything that a proud provider would be ashamed of in the future was poor form.

For example, early on I diagnosed Vtack instead of properly identifying Torsades. Treated the Vtack and killed my pt. Heard, "Oh Dwayne, Poor form." No yelling, or insulting, but I left that class committed to never making the same mistake again. She was one of those terribly smart, passionate teachers that never attacked anyone. You just always wanted to do well to prove to her that you were worthy to be in her class! (At least I did) She was awsome.

Not arguing your point of course, that's just one of those things that struck me hard in medic school.

Dwayne

Dwayne,

It sounds like your instructor was more into making you think than into smacking you for making a mistake. I had a similar type of instructor who started each new class with the statement, " I have the highest pass rate in the state, and if you don't pass, I take it personally."

Ultimately, when I got my final score of 92% after the completion of the written and practical skills, I pulled him aside and thanked him for it. To my surprize, he thanked ME for making him look good in the eyes of the state!

I don't see how belittling the student in front of the whole class teaches anything but animosity toward the instructor. In my opinion, belittling the person who has other priorities (like paying bills, putting food in the house, etc) is taking care of those responsibilities rather than going deeper in debt by pushing to go to medic school, falls in the same category.

I realize that the EMS industry as whole would benefit from higher educational standards, and there is nothing wrong with furthering your educational levels. But if you can't afford to go, then you do what you have to do in order to make it happen. If it doesn't happen as fast as others think it should, then maybe that other person should look at all mitigating factors involved, before passing judgement.

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I just can't understand why it's not okay to not have the drive that some people have.

Obviously. And that is a character flaw that you will have to overcome in order to be a professional.

But the fact is, you cannot rectify your lack of "drive" to achieve professional excellence with your original statements about how awesome competent and committed to patient care you are. You have done nothing to demonstrate that in fifteen years.

As for your kids holding you back, did you have kids fifteen years ago? Did you realise when you joined EMS that you didn't have what it takes to progress professionally? Were you really just fine with remaining at the very minimum, entry level of training for a decade and a half, leaving the real work and responsibility to others with more '"drive"? Or did you start out all full of piss and vinegar, like most of us, ready to soar to the top, but then lose your professional motivation somewhere along the way? I cannot honestly believe that you have worked full-time in real EMS for this long and not figured out what the EMT-B is really worth in the grand scheme of things. You're going to have to be a lot quicker on the uptake than that in paramedic school if you intend to succeed.

Since your local paramedic school seems to "get it", you'll want to be careful to not start trying to impress all the n00b classmates with all your awesome war stories. You don't want to become "that guy" who stands as a shining example of why they prefer un-experienced students.

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I went back and looked at my previous posts, and gosh darn it, I can't find the word "awesome" used to describe myself anywhere - I can comfortably fit in the same room with my ego. And I do believe "drive" is one of those "character flaws" that can be taken off the shelf in due time, have the dust (no pun intended) knocked off of it and start using it productively again.

I don't recall sharing any war stories either - must be losing my touch...

Priorities shift through life. You of all people should know that, given what you've done. I think you have a fiancee? Wait till you get married and have kids - it takes more than the 20 seconds on your part to make them, to raise them. But that's neither here nor there.

Time will tell what kind of student I'll be. I will be more than happy to share that info with you when it happens. It'll be like giving me a challenge to prove you wrong! :)

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I went back and looked at my previous posts, and gosh darn it, I can't find the word "awesome" used to describe myself anywhere - I can comfortably fit in the same room with my ego.

Oooh, minus 5 for semantic games. Very poor form. I too went back and looked at my previous posts and I can't find the word "awesome" in quotation marks either. Perhaps a semester of college English would show you that, unless I put a word in quotation marks, I am not directly attributing that word to you. But in your early posts, you did try to tell us in so many words how competent you thought you were, despite only having three weeks of first aid training.

I don't recall sharing any war stories either - must be losing my touch...

Your touch or your mind. I never accused you of telling war stories. Reading comprehension is something else you're going to need to improve on in order to excel in paramedic school. It's not enough to just make the cot and drive the ambulance anymore.

Priorities shift through life. You of all people should know that, given what you've done. I think you have a fiancee? Wait till you get married and have kids - it takes more than the 20 seconds on your part to make them, to raise them.

Which is exactly why I waited this long to get married. I had my priorities straight. I knew that my commitment to professional excellence would suffer if I had to split my priorities, so I waited. Apparently, you felt it was okay to just go ahead and give half effort to both. Whatever works for you. But you can't BS us into believing this stuff about the patient being your number one priority.

Time will tell what kind of student I'll be. I will be more than happy to share that info with you when it happens. It'll be like giving me a challenge to prove you wrong! :)

Well, there is nothing I have said that stands to be proven wrong. The very best you can hope for is to prove that you've changed. I truly hope for that. Not because I care about you, but because I care about your patients.

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wow this is like a real wimbeldon tennis match, it just goes back and forth and back and forth.

I for one have a neck ache

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It's not enough to just make the cot and drive the ambulance anymore.

Shit!! It's not?? What about having a really bitching Star of Life tattoo, that still counts right? If not I am screwed.

Ruff, it is more like a Wimbledon Match on a rainy day. That clay is getting awfully muddy. I am not even sure what the original post was about anymore. :)

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wow this is like a real wimbeldon tennis match, it just goes back and forth and back and forth.

I for one have a neck ache

It appears a bit one-sided at the moment...He's toyin' with her..

Must be a slow day :)

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