Wednesday, June 17, 2009

What a good idea!!

So in Bangkok, they were finding that a large percentage of expectant mothers weren't making it to the hospital in time, due to horrible traffic conditions. So they formed a special division of the traffic police to deliver babies!!! That's actually a really great idea!!!

What a neat thing to do! (OK, neat...maybe not so might be a better word)

Special police unit delivers babies in Bangkok traffic jams (video news report)


Saturday, June 13, 2009

I posted this on my tumblr but I thought y'all might appreciate it too.

Dear Drunk

My name is Katie and I’m a healthcare worker. I take care of people when they’re sick or hurt, I hold their hands when they’re scared, take the extra corners out of their arms when they fall and put band-aids on boo-boos. Sometimes, when someone is really sick, I’ll even breathe for them or keep their heart pumping by pushing on their chest. I’m good like that, see.

While you’re out “enjoying” yourself on a Friday night, I can be found in your local Accident and Emergency department kindly giving up my sleep to look after sick people. In case you were wondering, by the end of my shift last night, I’d been up for 24 hours straight… and the reason, dear drunk, is this.

Before losers like you decided that a good night out ended with lying semi-conscious on the sidewalk with your eyes rolling back in your head, A&E would empty out in the early hours of the morning leaving just the sickest of sick patients in the department. This allowed us poor healthcare workers to have a break, a cup of tea and occasionally a nap. Now, because you’re selfish and stupid, this is not the case.

On a Friday and Saturday night, the majority of patients I see are:

so drunk/high on drugs they collapse in the street and inevitably, someone calls 999. If a person is intoxicated and unable to get home, the ambulance crew must take them to the hospital.
so drunk/high on drugs they walk in front of a car/spaceship/bike/train or fall down. Alcohol masks pain and so ambulance crews, unable to assess the patient properly, bring them to A&E just to be safe.
so drunk/high on drugs they get in to a fight with someone else who is equally intoxicated. Someone hits/stabs/shoots someone else and lo and behold, we have visitors. Its also worth noting that when we try and help them by stitching up their wounds, we’re met with abuse and violence.
If you weren’t so stupid and childish, you wouldn’t drink quite so much. You’d be able to walk out of the club with your shoes and knickers still in place, get a taxi/bus/train home and disappear in to the night. But, piss-head, the concept of moderation is far too advanced for you and your tiny pickled brain so listen up.

When you show up in my A&E, know that you are not my priority. You are not sick or dying, you’re drunk because you chose to be and I’m not interested. Please take a vomit bowl and find a seat out in the waiting room and be quiet. If you don’t want to wait, you’re more than welcome to go home, I don’t want to see you anyway.

When I do finally see you, its only because I have to. Please keep your hands to yourself at all times, I know I’m gorgeous and I’m very flattered but I’m not interested. Do not try and spit at me, swear at me or threaten me either, you’ll just end up thrown out of our nice warm establishment (or even arrested).

I’ll stick a big needle in your arm and dilute the alcohol in your blood just enough to make you sober enough to go home but not enough to relieve that enormous hangover you’ll have tomorrow… or in three days when your body gets done processing the booze.

When you wet yourself or throw up in your hair, don’t expect me to change you or clean you up. You’re a grown up and this is what you chose… If you have to get the tube home at 9am covered in piss and vomit, so be it. Now you know how I feel after a Friday night shift.

If nothing else, when you read about the 8 year old boy who almost died because there were no ambulances to send to him last night, know that it is your fault. The ambulance he so desperately needed was tied up scraping you, the piss soaked drunk, off the street.



Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Manual VS Automatic B/P

I came across this article on JEMS where a study was done on the differences between a manual and an automatic B/P reading and it reminded me of a conversation I had recently with a paramedic. In my county we use the Lifepak 12, ours are set up to be a BLS and an ALS tool as we can use it for pulse ox, B/P, capnography, Congreve, ECG and 12 lead ECG and as our AED. The paramedic and I were discussing the fact that most providers rely only on the information they obtain through their Lifepak now. We have both witnessed the look of panic on the newer members faces when the Lifepak beeps, alerting them that the pulse ox is not found because they put that on the same arm as the B/P cuff. When I first started I remember working with medics who insisted on at least one manual B/P, when going through my Enhanced class last year I had a few teachers who still felt the same way. Most people in my class rolled their eyes at the thought of taking a manual B/P, including myself, but after reading this article it definitely makes me take a step back.

Since the contributors and readers of this blog cover many states and protocols I figured we could get a good mix of opinions on this subject. So tell us, do you prefer only manual, only automatic, or a mixture of both?

P.S., When doing spell check on EMS related blogs you receive some interesting "suggestions." Instead of "capnography" spell check suggested that I use "pornography." Our Lifepak doesn't provide that, maybe it's an upgrade option?