Sunday, September 5, 2010

It's Not About You

Online EMT and Paramedic Practice Exams

Our society is more than a little egocentric. We have forgotten things like the Golden Rule. “Do unto other as you would have done to yourself.” This trend has most definitely found its way into emergency medicine. I see it in ambulance crews, emergency rooms, and nursing homes.

Many of us have forgotten why we got into the business. Others got into the business for all the wrong reasons. Some of us are just burned out. If you’re not in emergency medicine to help your fellow man, then you should probably find another way to make a living. If you are considering a job in emergency medicine and you’re not interested in helping others, please don’t waste your time.

I have stopped hanging out with the other crews at the hospital (for the most part). I’m tired of the negativity and the complaining. I work with some folks who complain every time they get a call. I work with others who complain every time it’s not a major emergency. I have news for them. 90% of our calls are not a major emergency. The simple truth is that most of our patients need a primary care physician and not an ambulance.

It’s all about attitude. You can let it get to you. You can get mad. I ran a call last year over ear wax/ear pain. Truthfully, it annoyed me a little, but I didn’t let it ruin my day. My partner and I still make ear wax jokes. We carry around a travel pack of Q-Tips now.

I’m lucky to work with someone who has a good attitude. He and I decided to spend each day running the calls we’re given, having as much fun as we can, and helping where we can. It has really changed our work experience and how we feel about our jobs. We laugh and generally have a good time. We have adopted an attitude of service. Our patients notice a difference, and so do we. We have patients who ask for us by name if we’re not the ones who arrive.

If you are studying to be an EMT or paramedic I have some advice for you. Never let go of the attitude of service. Be on the street to help your fellow man. Help them no matter what their race, creed, or situation is. Some folks will need your skills. Others will just be looking for a ride. If you go into every situation with the desire to help and be positive, you’re day will be much happier.

For those of you on the streets who have forgotten why you are there I have this advice. Don’t take yourself so seriously. Stop acting like you are carrying the cross. Remember your sense of humor, and treat every patient like you would want your loved ones treated. Keep your dignity and help them keep theirs. Don’t talk about your patients like they are not in the room with you.

It doesn’t matter if you are a Christian or practice any other major or new age religion. Remember this. You get out of the world what you put into it. If you treat people like crap, you’ll receive crap. If you look for a reason to complain, you will find one. Look for a reason to laugh. It’s the cheapest and best medicine there is.

Are you in an EMT training course? Here are some Online EMT and Paramedic Practice Tests

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