Miscarriages happen all the time . . .

“I don’t understand why they get so upset.  It happens all the time.  Every day.  Nothing’s changed . . . it’s just part of life.  They need to get over it more”

These were the words I once heard a triage nurse stating when we brought in a woman having a suspected miscarriage.  I guess statistically speaking they’re right – it does happen all the time.  But, to the individual it’s happening to, you couldn’t say anything more dumb. Continue reading

From Death to Birth

Attending ‘proper’ jobs in the Ambulance Service is a little like waiting for a bus.  You can do hundreds of silly nonsensical jobs and then, all of a sudden, a few serious ones all come at once.

Having a student with you means ideally you want them to witness, and get involved with, as many different types of patient complaints as possible – especially serious ‘time critical’ patients.  But this can be seen as being somewhat sadistic . . .  Continue reading

My god! It’s a good job you called us!

I stood and stared – mouth agape and eyes wide open.  I was in genuine shock at what I was seeing.

The job had come down as “Red 2, 35 year old female – Difficulty in Breathing – Chest Pain”.  On arrival our patient didn’t look happy . . . and neither did their husband, who was fidgeting backwards and forward rattling off in broken English what had happened with sincere heartfelt concern for his wife. Continue reading

We now have a student

I recently attended a Practice Educator course (PEd) which, once passed allows you to be allocated a student to mentor for a set period of time.  The course, run over less than a day, aims to get you prepared to deal with such things as, the student’s “signing off document”, or how to be a good role model to the future of our front line health care professionals – or more importantly, what do to if the student is a complete idiot.  Continue reading

Charity Ambulance Pull – Children In Need

I’ve got into a little habit of doing silly charity events of late.  So when a work colleague, Martin Lewis, approached me with an idea he had for a charity ambulance pull, from Hackney to White City, I thought to myself, how could I refuse.  Especially as it was for Children in Need.

“Is it going to be an older truck or a newer one?”  I asked hoping for the older ones.
“It’s a brand new ’12 plate”
“Damn it.  They’re heavier”
“Only by half a ton or so.  I’m sure we’ll manage” Continue reading

“Which bed you want us in guys?”

The doors were burst open into the resuss department by our trolley bed.  Our patient, recently brought back from cardiac arrest was not breathing and still in a critical state*.  Wires, tubes, dots, cylinders, devices, gadgets and of course, the machine that goes “ping” were strewn all about our patient desperately keeping track of any change in their condition.

In front of us were two bays with beds in . . . Continue reading