We have just come back from our Block one Orientation shifts, and wow was it ever a wild ride. In these 3 shifts we spend a day in the ER and 2 shifts on Ambulance in the busy Lower Mainland Post. What a AWESOME and tiring 3 days, I am still running on the high from the thrill of riding third in the big city.
On these orientation shifts we were riding third with a regular Paramedic crew and acting as a observer and helping out any way we could in order to get a taste of life on the streets and how street calls are actually run.
I came back from this experience with a renewed child like excitement and pride in my chosen path, It really was yet another confirmation of everything I am working towards.
But above all I was impressed beyond words at the professionalism and encouraging nature of every single Paramedic I had the pleasure of meeting during my entire career thus far. There is such a mentoring and helping attitude and just a genuine desire to pass on the passion and knowledge people have for this job. It was incredible and just a joy to see people enjoy their job so much.
Of course there were complaints about the employer and how things are run, and the usual burn out and jadedness that experienced medics all seem to have… but they really were happy to pass on their tips and tricks to the rookie student.
I am extremely proud to call myself a part of this group and hope on day too I can pass on my knowledge to the next generation of paramedics.
All in all my time on car was quite routine and nothing too extraordinary happened. I did however get a nice variety of calls and patients as well as some very interesting clinical signs and symptoms I had only read about!
I listened to crackles in the lungs of a CHFer, I struggled to find a B/P on a CP pt. only to finally hear it down about 90/60.
I saw accessory muscle use and heart dysrythmias on Cardiac monitors, I started IVs on real patients that actually needed the fluid and investigated real Histories and complaints!
What an amazing experience in real patient care and dealing with coworkers, the fire Dept. and real people!
Ripping down the roads Code 3 against traffic to a CP call, assisting the CCPs and taking a glucose tests… getting caught up in the flurry of activity and spit out the other side wondering what had just happened. Fortunately there was always a kind and helpful face to explain and encourage a intelligent response and analysis of the call.
The real gem of the night was definetly our Code 3 STEMI Transfer to Vancouver General Hospital, a 25 min ride with a full Ambulance, filled up with cardiac monitors, infusion pumps, RN, Paramedics and the ecstatic student in the back firing off questions about ST Elevation Myocardial Infarctions as we rolled straight up to the Cath lab at VGH.
The pt. was a go for the Angioplasty and I sandwiched myself in between the Monitors and technicians and watched in fascination as the dye made its way through the heart and distinct narrowing showed up on the X-rays. The heart was in dire straits and was very very sick, they would need to place 4 Stents to open up the narrowed arteries. My eyes were glowing with delight and the grin on my face could barely hold back the words on my lips…