Tuesday, 13 December 2011

The American Effect

I have had two modes when I have been working. When I work with one driver, an nice man who is from the TCI and worked in the emergency services in one form or another for years, it is so slow.  We do almost no calls, not even scheduled transfers.  When I am with a young EMT from the states, all hell breaks loose.  We get car accidents, assults and medicals. Even my first fatality.  We weren't even working together that day! Just overlapped long enough at shift change to get a very long call!  Along with the scheduled transfers and medivacs. 

Today my partner, a new driver, and I had to give the American a ride for some training we had, and we started getting calls for car accidents.  But we got called off the first and the second the patient decided he did not want to go to the hospital. He even leaves a lingering effect on the truck!  Luckily he loves being busy!

I did have one busy shift with my regular driver and got to make the EMT very jealous! The call itself was not very interesting. A woman was feeling very unwell, but she had been in the hosptial that morning to see the doctor.  So we took her back for assessment and with her fever and neck pain, the doctor decided to do a lumbar puncture (more commonly known as a spinal tap.)  The best part about this island is the small and less busy hospitals is that I was able to ask the doctor to watch.  He is a very nice gentleman from London, Ontario.  So I got to see my first LP.  Which is actually a fairly creepy thing when you see how big the needle is.  But I liked it.

I just had my four days off, which were very boring.  I went to the beach when the sun was shining. Watched tv when it wasn't. Drank some beer in the sun and snorkeled some more.  Not necessarily in that order.  Saw lots more fish, including a herd (pack? flock?) of what looked like little barracudas.  Swam on quickly there.  Also tracked this cool flat fish that is sand coloured and blends in completely when he stops moving. 

Today was back at it. I was working with the recent hire. She is a local and knows the roads really well.  She is still working on learning the lifting but we had a good time today.  Girl power rocked the TCI EMS.  And to make today even more awesome our boss showed up at the hospital this morning with a surprise.  Helicopter rescue training.

The EMS service is just starting to work on guidelines for a helicopter to be dispatched with a medic to calls on the other islands.  With ambulances on only two of the eight main islands there is not a great response time as you may imagine!  Now we are working with TCI Helicopters to provide service to the less populated islands and possibly transfers from the Grand Turk hospital to Provo for further assesment or diverting to another country for further treatment.

Its just a little five seater that is also used for charters, but two of the seats pop out and a stretcher can be laid out front to back.  Such an amazing opportunity, I am so excited and I hope I actually get to go up! We are also trying to sweet talk the pilots into taking us up for a test flight. Maybe somewhere near the migrating whales.

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