4/1/2013 Eugene, Oregon:
At small ceremony held today, Paramedic Christopher Downdike was honored by his ambulance service for having a near 95% against-medical-advice refusal of transport rate. Among other things, Paramedic Downdike was recognized by both his superiors and his peers for being able to sign off nearly 438 patients during calendar year 2012.
“For service far beyond what we could call ‘normal’ we recognize Paramedic Downdike for managing to not transport far more patients than could have been expected.” Said Chief Norberg of the Mountain Orchard EMS department. “Through his inaction, Paramedic Downdike has been able to save Medicare, Medicaid, and a number of other private healthcare insurance companies vast amounts of money that they otherwise would have wasted on paying for ambulance services.”
Displaying little more than his trademark apathy, Paramedic Downdike said that it hadn’t been easy. “First off, I couldn’t sign em’ all off. I mean, these people… they call us at like all hours of the day for stupid reasons. Why are they calling me when they could just as easily take a taxi or just drive themselves. Is it really a heart attack?? Geez… Not this time, buddy.”
Paramedic Downdike continued to deride patients who he felt were beneath his vast array of medical skills and level of competence. He let us know that most patients with “Chest Pain” were really just victims of indigestion that could probably just take some antacids and “be just fine” and that anyone complaining of back pain was “faking it so they can get drugs in the ER.”
“Call me when you’re dying and I’ll come save you. That’s what 911 is for. If you need a lot of my skills, then we’re good. But if you call me because you’re having something stupid like a broken arm, well then you better be able to sign that piece of paper because I ain’t havin’ it.” Said the heroic paramedic.
It wasn’t a perfect record though.
“There’s this stupid state law that says we can’t really tell someone that we’re not going to take them to the ER if they really want to go, so sometimes we’ve got no choice.” Paramedic Downdike explained. “A lot of those cases I was able to just turf to BLS but some of those yahoos actually made me take em’ to the hospital. Hello bench seat… you ain’t messin up my cot today!”
At the end of the ceremony, Paramedic Downdike received a call for a 2 year old having a seizure. He was heard muttering “Stupid parents who can’t give their kid Tylenol” as he sauntered off to “take a leak” before he left.