It looks like I touched a very obvious nerve with my last post on frequent fliers: Someone FailedÖ Is it the System? Ė Everyday EMS Ethics Ė Every EMS person, and almost every healthcare provider is faced with the problem of the frequent flierÖ someone who, for whatever reason, consumes more time, energy, and resources than does almost any other part of the population.
- And a nurse blogger that I hadnít found yet gave me a mention as well: ďThe 80-20 rule and Emergency Health CareĒ
Before the call that I wrote about on that very shift a landscaper who was working on the lawn near our fuel pumps came over and struck up a conversation while I was filling up the truck. Nice guy, he was. We talked about the communityís ambulance service and I filled him in on some things that I want the public to know about us, and about EMS in general. He was pretty intrigued and stated that he had no idea that our calls ran into the thousands from just that small town. He had no idea that our pay was so low, or that the town paid us such a pittance in tax money. As for the call volume, he asked:
ďBut arenít a lot of those calls from people who donít need an ambulance and are just wasting your time?Ē
Nope. Only new paramedics fall into the trap of judging their patients. I donít like to judge, although Iím human too, but itís my job to take care of people. Iíve given my whole career to taking care of my fellow man on their terms, not mine. I want to help people and itís why Iíve gotten up every morning for the last ten or so years. I just wish that I had the tools to really help them, to do something other than just haul them off to the ER. I wish I had more professional authority to do something differentÖ maybe even to show them some tough love to break their cycle of sucking at the teat of society.
Again, call me naive.
Honestly, since I wrote that post Iíve been extremely busy and havenít had the time to put the requisite effort into writing something to equal the caliber of my blogger buddyís collective answers. However, this gives me an opportunity to trot something out that I wrote a few months back. I think that itís an answer to the frequent flier problem. I donít think that it will ever be truly ďsolvedĒ unless everyone suddenly decides that they are the masters of their own existence and takes full responsibility for their own lives, but then again, in that case EMS wouldnít be much fun anymore.
Hereís the link to that post: ďThe Current US Economy and EMS Ė An In-Depth look at how this mess will affect 911 in your communityĒ With all of the new readers Iíve been getting, Iíd like to see if I can get more input on this one. Enjoy.