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  1. #21
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    I take lexapro for anxiety and am looking to take the next open test. I don't have panic attacks and never have, I could stop taking it but wouldn't feel as good and just feel anxious when waking. I hope this would not disqualify me.

    As far as blood tests go, they would not be testing for an SSRI (testing for illegal drugs) so I seriously doubt they would find it. I am guessing they would find it in your medical records thou, especially if it payed for through insurance.
    To the people who are saying you can't do the job, I think that is ridiculous, sure some people are too mentally unstable to perform and too much of a liability. Don't forget that a large portion of america are on or have been on an SSRI and that a large percentage of fire fighters who have already been hired have probably started them after being hired and don't have to worry. I am not saying you will be hired because I don't know my self, I am thinking it might be a problem and hope it is not for both your sake and mine.


  2. #22
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    Donít say a damn thing about being on medications. Itís none of their business, itís not like you are going to collapse or be a danger to someone or the side effects will hurt your job performance. If you said you were on heart medication, it would be a different story. As long as you know that you can do the job, keep the medication to yourself. If the medication is controlling the issue, then there really is not an issue.

    I would just go to a Dr. that has never seen me before and ask him to do the pre hire physical and donít tell him you are on any meds.

    Most fire chiefs are most likely on antidepressants.

  3. #23
    MembersZone Subscriber rpferry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stcaf View Post
    Donít say a damn thing about being on medications. Itís none of their business, itís not like you are going to collapse or be a danger to someone or the side effects will hurt your job performance. If you said you were on heart medication, it would be a different story. As long as you know that you can do the job, keep the medication to yourself. If the medication is controlling the issue, then there really is not an issue.

    I would just go to a Dr. that has never seen me before and ask him to do the pre hire physical and donít tell him you are on any meds.

    Most fire chiefs are most likely on antidepressants.
    It's completely their business man. Meds can have varying degrees of side effects and if something should happen ON DUTY while you have those meds in your system some cities/municipalities may not cover you. Furthermore, you may get terminated for withholding information on your application and pre-hire information sheets if they did find out about the medication. Just be honest and forthright from the get-go. My .02
    -Rob
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  4. #24
    Forum Member CaptOldTimer's Avatar
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    It is the Departments business, Pal!


    IF he gets far enough in the hiring process that he goes for a complete medical physical they are going to draw blood and lots of it. 6 vials and test for everything and if you are taking anything it is going to show up in the blood test!


    Most departments and their medical testing facilities require you to bring with you and list all medications you are on or have been on for the last year!

    Better be prepared to answer what is THIS in you system???
    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

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  5. #25
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    I'm gonna have to go with the /non of their business/ camp. I took welbutrin to stop smoking.. does that disqualify me? It's technically an anti depressant.. and hell, that was in the military.. when i was armed.
    Would they fire someone for being on anti depressants once they were hired? I doubt it. Most Fire Departments don't even fire someone when the pop dirty on a UA, they provide counseling.
    Sad that still in 2010 the world hasn't come around on mental health. Tough guys abound and will self medicate with booze and other 'accepted' vices, but refuse to see the benefits of good psychiatric assistance.
    I'd also look into your local state/city laws protecting against the disclosure of that information to employers.

  6. #26
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    You are incorrect when you say that the department won't or can't ask about it. You will fill out an extensive medical questionairre that will ask questions that begin with, "Have you ever......"

    To tell a candidate to lie is against everything we stand for as firefighters. Are our standards so low that it is acceptable to tell someone it is OK to lie to get the job?

    Lastly, most departments (at least here on the West Coast) conduct a very extensive background examination coupled with a polygraph examination.
    Paul Lepore
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  7. #27
    Forum Member Tipys's Avatar
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    You know I am not on a department yet. But I do know a few things. Every department looks for a few things Honesty is one of the biggest. If you have to hide anything to get a job as a Firefighter. In my option your not right for the job you lied to get it. You didn't earn it and you don't deserve it.
    RIP Hela

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  8. #28
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    i really don't feel like you are /hiding/ anything. You are only exercising your right as a patient. Again, I'm sure there is a law/regulation regarding this depending on the state or local government. I don't advocate lying (and not really sure that any of my statements ever said to), but i do feel that there are personal aspects of one's life that do not need mentioning in a job interview or hiring process.

    Someone seeking help for mild depression should not be completely herded out of the process, and to say that they should is silly.

    Yes, not everyone should be a fire fighter, i agree, and someone with serious anxiety, panic attacks, or crippling depression should seek employment elsewhere. But for someone suffering for a short time with PTSD after coming back from the war, someone going through a divorce and needs some help, or even someone dealing with a death in the family. These are cases where people are put on mild doses of anti depressants and come off of them after the problems have cleared.

    Should they be disqualified?

  9. #29
    Forum Member Jonnee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peterbound View Post
    i really don't feel like you are /hiding/ anything. You are only exercising your right as a patient. Again, I'm sure there is a law/regulation regarding this depending on the state or local government. I don't advocate lying (and not really sure that any of my statements ever said to), but i do feel that there are personal aspects of one's life that do not need mentioning in a job interview or hiring process.

    Someone seeking help for mild depression should not be completely herded out of the process, and to say that they should is silly.

    Yes, not everyone should be a fire fighter, i agree, and someone with serious anxiety, panic attacks, or crippling depression should seek employment elsewhere. But for someone suffering for a short time with PTSD after coming back from the war, someone going through a divorce and needs some help, or even someone dealing with a death in the family. These are cases where people are put on mild doses of anti depressants and come off of them after the problems have cleared.

    Should they be disqualified?




    Peterbound get you head out of your rear and listen to what these folks are saying.


    If you apply to become a firefighter and fill out the application and also the medical history section and fail to list and or falsify anything, this can be grounds for you to be passed over and your application be tossed!


    Taking a medical physical for the fire and or police services, will indicate to the department if you are physically able to meet the rigors of firefighting. We will not hire anyone who has heart, respiratory, any social diseases problems and those who are not stable. We also conduct a psychiatric exam by a Doctor of Psychiatry to be certain that the member can deal with everything we run into.


    This isn't a Don't Ask - Don't Tell situation!!!!

  10. #30
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    If you have a condition that is treated through medication and there are no side effects of the medication that would hinder your performance, donít say a darn thing. It looks like Jonnee is throwing stones in a glass house. Who is he to play God in this forum?

    Go for it, get the job, and move on with your life.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tipys View Post
    You know I am not on a department yet. But I do know a few things. Every department looks for a few things Honesty is one of the biggest. If you have to hide anything to get a job as a Firefighter. In my option your not right for the job you lied to get it. You didn't earn it and you don't deserve it.

    You should add future 40%er to your signature!
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  12. #32
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    If you list on your background and psych information that you have seen a psychologist in the past, or been on medication, the psychologist who interviews you is going to want to know why. He may want to talk to your doctor. If your medical insurance paid the bill there is a record. In the process you will sign off your rights and they can look at anything they want. The review and evaluation could have an affect on your being considered to wear the badge.

    I talked to a psychiatrist about this recently. I asked him, ďYou feel the need to go see a professional about an emotional issue or something else pertaining to your mental health. So you seek treatment. Then, you find out later this treatment could affect your getting a badge. Doesnít seem fair.Ē He agreed it wasnít fair but unfortunately thatís the way it is.
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