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medic429

No Sleep 24's

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I just came off two horrible NO SLEEP 24's (zero!)....We are not allowed to sleep until 10pm. (7am-7am shift) I go to bed at 10, and don't you know it, the last two shifts-calls at 11 and didn't stop until about 4am-then the paper work kept me up until about 7:30 (1/2 hr past quitting time), I feel like a total slug. I was wondering what you all do "the day after" a long night....sleeping all day is out of the question. I have two kids that aren't about to let that happen. Just curious how you all handle it?? I'm a wee bit fried. :shock:

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I hate the kind of BS. We aren't allowed to sleep during the day even though we may be working not just 24s, but 48s and 72s! Where is the sense in that?

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I hear that Summit! I do know of some services that are allowed to sleep whenever all duties are done--we usually have ours knocked out by 11am--good nap time B)--if we could.

I just don't understand the logic....sure, we may NOT be awake ALL night, but even up in the middle of the night once screws me all up.

ahhhh, well.

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I did do a short stint with Rural Metro here while I was in school. Luckily (as it now sounds) they were pretty forgiving when it came to downtime. We were required to do the typical taking report/check-in procedures, and then check the rig and sign off. This typically took only 2 hours (7a shift start) When this was all complete, the Medic was asleep by 10a, assuming there were no calls!

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At my full-time job (Murray County EMS, OK) we are allowed to sleep whenever we want as long as our station duties are done and the truck is stocked and clean. At my part-time job (Southern Oklahoma Ambulance Service) we are allowed to lay down after 5pm. Sounds pretty harsh to have to stay up all day if you work all night. You may check the labor laws in your state. Some states don't allow an employer to require employees to be awake all day if you do not have a "reasonable opportunity" to sleep at least 8 hours during the 24. As for me, when I am up for 48 or 72 hours straight just sleep an entire day when I am off work.

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How do they expect you to be fully capable of performing your jobs on no sleep...That doesn't make sense. I wouldn't blame people if they quit!!!

I work 4 days straight...no brakes...but I work out of my house and when the tones blow...I go!!! But I get to sleep any time I want to. That really sucks guys

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:D I worked for this one EMS unit they were 24 hour shifts 7a-7a. They expected you to work in the ER if not on a run from 7a-11p. Then you could lay down, if a ems call comes in you are up working, If the 1 Er nurse gets busy(meaning 1-2pt) well you are up to after 11p helping Her/him. They seem helpless, So basically no sleep for the 24 hours. Not cool, I do not mind helping out in the ER you can get great experience, But I am not a slave. So it is no wonder why I know work for a company that as long as your base duties are done, truck check, relax do what you need to do.

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If you are overworked from a 24 hour shift, call in sick for the next one. It's not as deviant as it sounds. A person who is exhausted and unable to function adequately at their job has every right to call in sick, because they are sick. No one said sick is getting the flu. I'd much rather have someone say "I am exhausted, I will be no good at work tommorrow," rather than go "booyah I'm tough, I'll drink some coffee AND GO BACK IN!" And if you are being over worked, it will only come to management's attention that the crews are overworked if people start not showing up for work. Complaints from the crews are one thing. Unfilled ambulances are another.

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A couple of years after FDNY took over EMS, they decided to "increase productivity" by putting on more ambulance tours for each tour of the 3 a day we run.

The problem was, while adding units, they didn't add personnel. They put butts into ambulance cabs by mandating overtime.

Example: I'd be scheduled for 1630-0030 hours, on 47Adam3. I'd arrive at 1615, and the lieutenant would tell me I was mandated, and going to work on 47David1 until 0630 hours. One of the guys I'd be relieving on 47Adam2, already on from 0830, would be jumping into 47David3 until 2230.

While still having 2 hours uncovered on the 8 hours of each unit, while they were on, at least they were available.

There will always be overtime sluts, and these folks made out like bandits.

The rest of us, however, could, and would, be subject to mandated overtime on up to 4 of the 5 tours we'd work each week.

Child care issues? School? Personal life? "Immaterial, you're there to work!" per the supervisors, and per the supervisor's supervisors. (Departmental policy is to advise a mandated crew-person at least 2, preferably more, hours prior to the normal end of your tour.)

Call in sick? You'd need a doctors "line" (doctor's note, but on department paperwork forms), and somebody else would have to be mandated to cover the tour, either your regular one, or the overtime one (When calling in sick, per policy, do it at least 2, preferably more, hours prior to the scheduled start of your regular tour).

One stunt done was, a crew-person would start the overtime tour, then go off service, "SicMOS" (sick Member Of Service) as too fatigued to safely continue. The department tried stopping that by sending these folks to be checked out by an ER MD, but the union stepped in, saying, it was a contractual issue that a crew-person could go to whatever doctor they preferred, and didn't have to go to an ER, as long as they produced the Doctor's Line on their next time in for work (when they'd probably be mandated again).

It finally resulted in a demonstration outside FDNY HQ. The FDNY EMS Chief in Charge, in a televised interview with the union president, lied thru his teeth on the matter, but eventually, they did some hiring, and gave up on some of the additional units.

Now, they have hired more personnel, and put them into the additional units. If they plan to have additional units for an expected patient surge, like inclement weather (Hurricane coming, snowstorm), special events (NY Marathon, Papal visit, New Years Eve Times Square Ball Drop)they "advertise" it over the Mobile Data Terminals in the ambulances, looking for crew-people who want to work overtime. Most of the special events are folks on their normal day off.

FYI, on the weather necessitated overtime? If the department declares a "Level One", all unscheduled absences must be documented, meaning Doctors lines, even for one day (policy is, documentation is not normally needed, simply recommended, until an absence of three days). "Level Two" means you must wait for your relief, one for one. "Level Three" means ain't nobody goin' home at the tour's end, you're becoming your relief's partner, and MUST work the entire 8 hour overtime tour.

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Maybe I'm too nice to my crews. As soon as all duties are done, they can sleep all day if they want. As long as they're available for calls or walk ins, they're fine.

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