Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Trauma Redux, Oct. 26 episode

It's nice to see "Trauma" share some of the truisms about EMS. My favorite was the scene with "Rabbit" and Marisa, the EMT who was carrying all of the gear, heading to a cardiac call. Marisa had the temerity to ask why her partner, a paramedic, wasn't carrying anything. "ALS stands for 'Aint Lifting Stuff," Rabbit replied. I've heard it phrased with a profanity, but what can you expect from network TV? I thought the interplay between Rabbit and the patient's agitated wife was authentic and very much in line with what EMTs deal with. I thought how he asked for her to hold the door (a subtle way to keep her occupied) is a very good tactic to deal with frantic family members. Make them helpful and then they can focus and not get in the way.
Overall, the Halloween episode was pretty good. It also had shown Rabbit's limits to being a "cowboy" and trouncing on standing orders. He had refrained from administering morphine to a child trauma patient. Other emergencies seemed to be handled well (paramedics or more experienced EMTs may take issue with that assessment).
The preview of an ambulance accident for next week's episode should be interesting, because there are too many ambulance accidents. Some have killed EMTs in the line of duty. My training and experience tell me that most other people on the road are too stupid to watch for ambulances. Assume the worst -- especially in New Jersey -- and don't just think the lights and sirens will keep you safe in the rig.

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