Saturday, May 21

I Did it!

State written exam was Thursday. I drove two hours to take it at a site where they could score my exam right away. The exam was broken into BLS and ALS sections. The BLS seemed easy and the ALS seemed REALLY hard. I wasn’t alone in this assessment as everyone I spoke to about it agreed that the ALS was a nightmare. In any event, I passed (97% for the BLS part and 88% for the ALS part). Friday I took a protocol test for my region and as of about 11 am I was a certified ALS provider online with my local medical control. I'm finally finished and it feels good.

Friday night I was hanging around with my family (including my parents who are visiting) when I heard my ambulance’s siren on our street. Odd, given my pager didn’t go off. My wife had arranged for a bunch of people to come over for a surprise party, including the on call crew. We had a lot of fun, grilling burgers and dogs and chatting. Perfect weather and great company. Very thoughtful of everyone, including my wife.

I had my first ALS call this morning. Call came in as “child with unknown medical emergency”. I walked (very FAST walk) into a hotel room to find a VERY groggy, nearly unresponsive 4 year old with a history of asthma. She didn’t seem to be moving much air – YIKES. Given our proximity to the hospital (less than 2 min), I did not mess around on scene. We loaded and drove lights and siren to the ED. From my arrival on scene to arival at the hospital was about 3 minutes. Certainly got my heart rate up, but I think the call went OK (I think the child was actually post-ictial when we got there, but didn’t figure that out until the call was over). My chief and another medic who showed up on scene both claimed I did a good job, so that helped. I really didn’t do much, (made sure her airway was open and gave her O2) but I really didn’t see the point in sticking around on scene when the hospital was so close, and I was just finished with the ABC’s when we got to the hospital, so no meds).