Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Two hard days...

Over the last couple of days I've noticed a few new things about the job, or more accurately the people the job serves. The public, full of different ideas and traditions, often has a differing but very specific expectation of what the ambulance man is for, and it's not always what I thought it would be.

Some people call out of genuine concern, whether medically well founded or not, and really believe that time is of the essence. And in the most case these people are suitably unwell, needing to see a doctor sooner rather than later! They've usually left i till the last second to phone and are very happy to see you. They'll have tablets ready and at hand, copious notes will have been made of their loved one's condition, and they'll know the consulting doctors name off by heart.

A second person calls mostly on request of a loved one, having panicked on hearing that they are unwell and desperately needing some help at hand. Not a bad reason indeed, even if the patient could perhaps have waited till morning, the concern is well founded in their minds and the comfort medical care gives them makes it worth while. I have certainly been guilty of this in the past, before starting, and have made calls that I thought were perfectly well founded, but could probably have waited. A certain trait of this person is the 'windmill', frantic waving of the arms in the middle of the road...because apparently house numbers just aren't enough.

A third person looks not for the ambulance man, but the ambulance. That free ride with plenty of seats and enough room for the bags, the taxi. Sad, but a lot of peoples view of the service is just that, no car at hand, not enough money for the bus, doesn't leave you with much choice...oh other than walking! I tell you, if you have enough time to smoke before you get on the ambulance then you probably phoned the wrong number!

These last two days have seen far more of the last two people, with only a sprinkling of the first. But such is life, and who knows maybe one day my runny nose will need emergency treatment...

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