Congratulations! Your patient survived.

I opened my work tray the other day to find an envelope.  Inside was a letter.  A standard letter suggesting with all integrity that I (amongst others) had managed NOT to kill someone.

there's other stuff written on it tooNow, these letters don’t come often, but they do come.  In fact, I have a few now.  And I wager that anyone working in the job long enough will end up receiving at least one at some point.

I remember the job too . . . well, by process of elimination it’d be hard not to.  Of the five cardiac arrests I’ve done this year so far, only one of them wasn’t called on scene! Continue reading

See you on the next job

Young-drunk-man-in-a-suit continued to hold his cracked, soon-to-be-dead phone up to my face.  In his drunken sway, with eyes barely focussed, his demeanour switched suddenly from startlingly desperate to that of a damp and pathetic dog.

“You see . . .” he snivelled, “I love her.  I know I’ve only known her for one date, but, she’s . . . she’s . . . I love her -”

And, before I could Judo-chop myself away to safety, young-drunk-man-in-a-suit flopped his head forward onto my chest and started to cry.

With hundreds of drunken revellers staggering about me in various states of inebriation, I continued to stand there, handset radio held to my ear waiting for a response from the police . . .

his cracked, soon-to-be-dead phone up to my face Continue reading

Nightmare job . . .

Like a soulless zombie, I stumbled in from work and collapsed onto the sofa.  Catatonic, I stared at the wall in front of me, eyes focused somewhere a thousand yards ahead.  My wife had seen this look before – she knew it all too well.  Horrors of a traumatic shift catching up to prey on a weary mind.  In bed, all thoughts of a peaceful slumber, snatched away.  In its place, a tortuous and endless eternity of painful memories.  My wife knew that something bad had happened so, she sat down carefully by my side and took my hand in hers.

“Oh my love, what’s happened?  You can tell me”

My lip quivered as tears welled in my eyes.  After a long pause I explained . . .

“I . . . I had to pick up a patient’s poo today!”

Continue reading

Here’s my doodle . . .

I’m a day dreamer and a doodler.  Generally, any piece of paper placed in front of me will end up scrawled all over with a barrage of hieroglyphics, twiddles, cubes, spirals, calligraphy and occasionally – a picture.  An old friend from donkey years back still doesn’t talk to me ever since I inadvertently drew boobs and penises over his dad’s death certificate whilst at his funeral wake.  The speeches were a little dull. Continue reading

I can’t move

The seriousness of most illnesses can be determined by the global demeanour of those gathered round the patient.  When you enter someone’s home and are greeted by a smiley happy chirpy face of a relative mid throws in the process of making a pot of tea, I think it’s a safe bet that the patient you’ve come to see will not be dead or dying.

I stood at the foot of a bed where my patient lay and unperturbed, repeated his proclamation.

“You can’t move”

The patient’s wife stood in the kitchen.  A smiley happy chirpy face befit her as she made a pot of tea. Continue reading

We’re both medical students . . .

When a young person trips over in the street half cut you really shouldn’t expect them to be calling an ambulance. When the said person is a medical student, well, it just seems to exacerbate the ridiculousness of the issue!

The call had come down as “22yom Falls. ?broken arm. ?intoxicated”. So, to give the person their dues, I was thinking they must have fallen from a height . . . say, from some scaffolding or something. Because that would warrant a broken arm surely.  When I arrived I was presented with two drunk males, one lying on the pavement and one leaning over him.

There was no scaffolding to be seen. Continue reading