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Medical Calls on vol. fire dept.

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  • #16
    As a paramedic, I have encountered this type of problem several times. First, it is important for the paramedic to realize that the first responder already on the scene is a big asset. The paramedic needs to get report from the first responder on the scene before asking the family questions, or asking the patient questions. Often times the first responder on the scene can offer the medics a quick thorough briefing as to what is going on. On the flip side, the medics must have faith and confidence in the first responder's skills. That means that the medics must know that the first responders are receiving quality training from their department. The first responder's fire department must also have a QA/QI system in place in order to monitor their first responder's skills. As a first responding firefighter/paramedic on an engine company, it ****es me off when the transport medics don't ask me for an update and stand their and ask the family and the patients the exact same questions that I just asked them. Soooo...I know both sides of the story.
    Good luck to all.

    Mike Clumpner
    Firefighter/Paramedic
    City of Durham (NC) Fire Department

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    • #17
      In our State we (Firefighters) have a nice little statute that we can lean on for support. That statute states that if the Fire Deparment is called to ANY emergency, the highest ranking officer of that department is in charge of the scene.

      If we go to an MVA, the fire department runs the scene and instructs the police, ambulance, etc. on what tasks they need to perform.

      We run First Reponder medical, but, our town has mandated that we become EMT's. Our paramedic service comes from the local hospital in town and is run from their firehouse. Conflict only developes between either the paramedics and the private ambulance crew, or between the ambulance crew and us.

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      • #18
        I can understand the situation. Like so many that have already responded I am a paramedic that started as a first responder, and I still work with a great many first responders still to this day (the area we cover is about 60% rural). I can appreciate the feelings of the first responders. They feel like they're useless as they sit there and watch the medics repeat everything they've just done, but like was stated earlier, that medic is responsible. It actually boils down to turst and tact. If the medic trusts the first responder, then he shouldn't be as likely to repeat stuff right then unless the vitals or whatever had been a while. Tact comes in at getting the patient loaded BEFORE repeating any of this stuff. I know some of this may sound mean or uncareing, but sometimes it has to be done. I've also found that it helps matters a great deal to tell the first responders, no matter what their level of cert is, that the medic tells them each time that they appreciate the help. Whether the medic likes it or not, sometimes his job would be alot harder without those first responders.

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