We’re More Like Police Than Fire

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When EMS professionals complain, the justification often includes an appraisal of how our family in the ‘big red trucks’ do (or sometimes, don’t do) things instead of comparing ourselves to our brothers and sisters that make up that ‘thin blue line’. The choice of comparison is most likely swayed by the fact that somewhere around half of us working in EMS do […]

The Last Word

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You know that feeling you get when you have your partner laughing so hard it hurts? Sure, it helps that you both have been stuck at a remote street corner post since 0300, but you know what I’m talking about. Its that moment when the idea of being a stand-up comedian flashes through your mind and […]

Black Friday Sales for EMS

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You never hear a paramedic yell “yeah, its a holiday weekend!” Holidays simply don’t have the same meaning to the people who work in EMS than they do to the rest of humanity. But, hey, we are human too. To paraphrase Shakespeare in Act 3 of The ‘Medic’ of Venice, “if you lacerate us, do we not […]

On the Shoulders of Giants

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As we go about our routine business each shift, it can be easy to forget that we are involved in a field of healthcare that is still relatively young. Our history as a unique discipline has only recently been documented through the efforts of  the National EMS Museum, which is itself just in its infancy. […]

EMS as the Halloween of Healthcare

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Just as each year transitions at harvest from abundance toward its inevitable end, we in the prehospital field often usher lives fraught with medical disorder or trauma from normalcy toward a cold, strange world. We wear uniforms with our stoic masks and find nature’s trickery affecting strangers who beg us for treatment. Beyond the surface, the history of Halloween also […]

Stop Dissing Response Times and Start Dissecting the Argument

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It is not hard to find an article that bashes the industry’s insistence on measuring response time as a performance goal. The latest one I saw was published just today in “Don’t let response times overshadow the role of EMS” by the respected author Arthur Hsieh. The flow of his article follows the traditional pattern of […]

Building Political Capital

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Every EMS agency could use a little more political clout. After all, we deserve it. We actually save lives! “They” should just automatically recognize “our” value, right? Well, if you have ever thought/said that statement, you are going about it all wrong. I don’t care what financial/political model your agency operates under, politics work basically […]

What Higher EMS Pay Requires

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I know that the debate on EMS wages did not begin last week with Sean Eddy’s post “5 Reasons Why EMS Doesn’t Deserve Higher Pay.” For instance, Caitlyn Armistead did a great article last October entitled “Burger Flippers Vs. Ambulance Drivers” long before her recent rebuttal in “5 Reasons EMS DOES Deserve Higher Pay“. The […]

5 Reasons EMS DOES Deserve Higher Pay

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In a guest ‘rebuttal’ yesterday to a recent article by Sean Eddy on EMS wages, I apparently succeeded in generating “more heat than light” on the conversation. While I regret the author’s tone in that post, my desire to open a dialog with interested parties remains. I discussed the topic with up-coming EMS author and […]

An Open Letter To Author Sean Eddy

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  I believe Sean Eddy knew he was playing with fire when he wrote his article on “5 Reasons Why EMS Doesn’t Deserve Higher Pay” posted at the Uniform Stories website. It certainly struck a chord with Adam Smolensky shortly after I posted a link on the High Performance EMS Facebook page. He later contacted […]

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