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[Blog Entry] naturegirl's Blog - The Heart of the matter


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I have been trying to explain to my husband what's going on with my job and I find myself almost incredulous that I let it go this far. I don't want to hang out all the dirty laundry, so I'm thinking deep inside I do want to stay in EMS. I made a mistake. After months of a schedule that required 40-48 hours straight, no breaks, long distance transfers and high stress calls, I made repeated attempts to change the schedule, me bringing up repeated safety concerns, such as EMT's driving 90 while texting, an EMT having a seizure on the job and being allowed back to work a week later, I made a medication error. Funny that really wasn't covered in my medic course, but the thought of hiding it, trying to pass the blame, anything dishonest, never crossed my mind. During a code enroute after the standard EPI, I administered Narcan per our protocols, but the patient had been down a long time and was pronounced at the hospital. During the cleanup of the truck a bottle of Haldol was found and being the standup adult that I am, I could only conclude I had administered the wrong medication. I don't remember it like that, but evidence is evidence. I distinctly remember grabbing Narcan. Orange cap. Not Haldol. Yellow cap. Anyway, I went to my director, wrote it up, wasn't asked for mitigating circumstances, such as the fact I'd been up for 40 hours straight. I wasn't asked how many cardiac arrests I'd worked solo: 1. Just give us the facts. Now 6 months later, with no follow up from the head of the service or the medical director, based on another incident blown out of porportion that I was rude to a nurse in the ER, I am being asked to resign. I'm actually being threatened with them going to the medical board is probably more accurate, unless I resign. My husband wants to know why I'm not being demoted, was I ever counseled on any of this, had I ever talked to my medical director prior to all this. My answer is I don't know, no, never. I can never remember anyone being counseled, suspended, demoted, nothing. Once in a while we lose a good medic to an ER nurse who makes a complaint about this exact thing. They were rude to me. I've thought long and hard the last 4 weeks about how many times I went to my boss about issues that concerned me, mainly the continued use of straight shifts. Everyone comes in tired, including me, I told them. Repeatedly. When I ask for time off, I get turned down by the supervisor. I was publically mocked at one point for it with a big production about "conspiracies" and how there aren't any, you just take time when you need it. But yet I couldn't get it when I asked. So in the end, it's my medical license and my future in EMS. It is completely my ass on the line. I've realized that I really lacked any sort of perspective to compare the service to, as I never worked anywhere else. The medical board can screw me forever and I will not work as a medical provider in this state. Ever. I guess I am a little curious about whether this is over the top, pretty typical or just boring and repetitively ignorant. I thought I was a good medic until all this happened. I doubt myself every day and I wonder if going to medic school was a huge mistake that I will pay for forever. Everything I have done the last 3 years was so that the last career I would ever have would be in EMS. Now that's in question. I was planning to move but regardless of the distance and how far away I can never outrun myself. I will always question myself. I guess the bottom line is if I had more confidence in my abilities I might have walked sooner and wouldn't be in this predicament now. I don't know. I love my job, loved my job, that is. Despite all the issues about safety, put me in the back and I'm happy. I love patient care, but maybe I don't deserve it. I keep thinking if I was a better medic this wouldn't have happened, but I know too much about other mistakes made and can only conclude that somewhere in documentation I missed medic self preservation.

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