1. #1
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default Need advice for ride alongs from medics!

    I am starting to do ride alongs with a nearby ALS service this saturday, the last time i did one I was an in class EMTB student. I've been operating in the field for 6 months on a BLS service where it is pretty easy to take control of the situation for the most part. What I need is some advice on handling calls with 2 Paramedics and me(the basic). Should I await orders from them or how shall I operate without stepping on their toes (I need to make a good impression since I would like this to be my future employer). PLEASE help!
    Last edited by FireEMT712; 02-03-2010 at 06:55 PM.
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,439

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    I am starting to do ride alongs with a nearby ALS service this saturday, the last time i did one I was an in class EMTB student. I've been operating in the field for 6 months on a BLS service where it is pretty easy to take control of the situation for the most part. What I need is some advice on handling calls with 2 medics and me(the basic). Should I await orders from them or how shall I operate without stepping on their toes (I need to make a good impression since I would like this to be my future employer). PLEASE help!
    Ask them what they would like you to do.
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin

  3. #3
    Forum Member
    Jonnee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    1,256

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusKspn View Post
    Ask them what they would like you to do.


    What he said. BTW if a paramedic or a cardiac tech is on the bus you aren't going to take anything over. They will tell you what they want. You are a visitor in their operation.

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Removed, miss communication.
    Last edited by FireEMT712; 02-03-2010 at 06:55 PM.
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,439

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    That was the whole point of the post, I stated there will be 2 medics and me and I won't be able to take control of the situation like I could on our calls....
    What I'm looking for is advice on how to show that I can handle things without having to be told exactly what to do but at the same time not be too headstrong.
    Once again, you will have to ask them when you get there.

    Some guys are dicks, some guys love to help, some guys don't want ride alongs to say a single word, some love to teach.
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin

  6. #6
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusKspn View Post
    Once again, you will have to ask them when you get there.
    Thanks again, I will do that.

    Would just like to see any other hints or tips to being a basic with a medic on board.
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  7. #7
    Forum Member
    Jonnee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    1,256

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    That was the whole point of the post, I stated there will be 2 medics and me and I won't be able to take control of the situation like I could on our calls....
    What I'm looking for is advice on how to show that I can handle things without having to be told exactly what to do but at the same time not be too headstrong.


    Hey Pal, I don't know where you are located. A lot of people call emt's medics. I was simply pointing out about a EMT vs. a Paramedic or Cardiac Techs. In Virginia we use the proper names for guys who ride the buses, ambulances, medics, units, rescues in other parts of the USA.

    When I was in the Army years ago, we had guys called medics. Then they were a basic EMT by todays standards. Nothing more.

    I know the differences in the certifications.

    If they ask you to do something, then do it as you were trained to preform that task.

  8. #8
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    2,970

    Default

    I agree with the others that talking to the crew you will riding with is a good start.

    Additionally, are you doing this as a medic student or just looking for experience/employment?

    Regardless, without direction to do otherwise, jump right in and take the pt's vitals if able to. This will definately score you some points, as long as they are correct. They need done on every pt anyway, so why not show the initiative by doing them instead of standing around waiting to be told to do something you know needs done.

  9. #9
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonnee View Post
    Hey Pal, I don't know where you are located. A lot of people call emt's medics. I was simply pointing out about a EMT vs. a Paramedic or Cardiac Techs. In Virginia we use the proper names for guys who ride the buses, ambulances, medics, units, rescues in other parts of the USA.

    When I was in the Army years ago, we had guys called medics. Then they were a basic EMT by todays standards. Nothing more.

    I know the differences in the certifications.

    If they ask you to do something, then do it as you were trained to preform that task.
    My apologies for not specifiing Paramedics, will edit post. I can see how with military background the term Medic could have been used for many different certifications in your experience.

    So with you advice I should just kind of do as i'm asked and demonstrate my ability by doing it correctly and efficiently? I'm just clarifying because I would really like to get on this ambulance service here in the near future and I want to make the BEST possible first impression I can.(my first 2 ride alongs are scheduled with the 2 field supervisors)
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  10. #10
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireMedic049 View Post
    I agree with the others that talking to the crew you will riding with is a good start.

    Additionally, are you doing this as a medic student or just looking for experience/employment?

    Regardless, without direction to do otherwise, jump right in and take the pt's vitals if able to. This will definately score you some points, as long as they are correct. They need done on every pt anyway, so why not show the initiative by doing them instead of standing around waiting to be told to do something you know needs done.
    That was a question I was just about to add to the post lol. Thanks for the post!
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    SW MO
    Posts
    4,249

    Default

    If you're doing a ride-along, you're probably there to observe. Before you even run a call, find out from them if they would like you to assist with vitals or whatever when on a call and do as they ask. Be sure to be nice about it, something like "I don't want to get in your way, but if I can take vitals or anything to help you guys out I'd be glad to." With the right approach, they'll appreciate the offer. With the wrong approach, well, don't go with the wrong approach.

    I've never had an issue with a rider helping if they ask before we get a call, or even if they ask what they can/can't do while riding. One rider I had got a surprise when I told him to start compressions on a cardiac arrest, and then a bigger surprise when the guy came up fighting after about 10 compressions.

    On the flip side, I've had riders that I made stand to the side and observe. It's all in the attitude.

  12. #12
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Catch22 View Post
    If you're doing a ride-along, you're probably there to observe. Before you even run a call, find out from them if they would like you to assist with vitals or whatever when on a call and do as they ask. Be sure to be nice about it, something like "I don't want to get in your way, but if I can take vitals or anything to help you guys out I'd be glad to." With the right approach, they'll appreciate the offer. With the wrong approach, well, don't go with the wrong approach.

    I've never had an issue with a rider helping if they ask before we get a call, or even if they ask what they can/can't do while riding. One rider I had got a surprise when I told him to start compressions on a cardiac arrest, and then a bigger surprise when the guy came up fighting after about 10 compressions.

    On the flip side, I've had riders that I made stand to the side and observe. It's all in the attitude.
    10-4, I know they allowed us to assist during ride alongs in class. I think I will just ask what I can or can't do as you said and go from there! Thanks again.
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  13. #13
    MembersZone Subscriber
    N2DFire's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2000
    Location
    S.W. Virginia
    Posts
    1,286

    Default

    Well it's been said enough but I'll say it again anyway - ask the guys you're going to ride with what they want you to do.

    Also - FireMedic049 asked already and I don't think I missed the answer so ...

    Are you just doing ride-alongs or are you a student doing "truck time"?

    I will spare you the long(er) drawn out version and say that there are major differences in what you can do (and therefore will be expected to do) as well as insurance coverage depending on which of these two you are (at least here in VA anyway).

    Students are expected to work to the level they are in class to become (i.e. Basic Student acts as a Basic - Medic Student acts as a Medic) under the direct supervision of a provider already certified at or above that level.

    Observers (or what we call Ride Alongs) are there to do just that - Observe. Doesn't matter if you are a EMT or an Electrician, a Paramedic or a Plumber - you watchee and no touchee. The agency you are riding with may have a different policy based on their Medical Director & Insurance carrier.


    Even if you are there just to "Observe" you can still gain brownie points by carrying the bag(s), monitor, etc. Basically become a Pack Mule for the tour. You can also get familiar with where things are located in the bag(s) and hand them to the other providers as they need them (esp the basics like a BP cuff, stethoscope, Pulse Ox, Glucometer, etc). Get familiar with their run reports or Pt care worksheets and ask them if they'd like you to be the "recorder" on calls.

    If they tell you No on anything don't get your feelings hurt - it's not personal. Just like we ride on the coat tails of our Medical Directors, allowing you to do anything directly affecting Pt. care or record keeping will fall back on us - not you. So unless these folks know you already, just bide your time and earn some street cred and then they'll let you start assisting.

    Either way - good luck on the tour and the future job.
    Take Care - Stay Safe - God Bless
    Stephen
    FF/Paramedic
    Instructor

  14. #14
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Memphis Tn,USA-now
    Posts
    5,436

    Default

    Depending on how often they have stuidents ride along,they should know how to lay down the SOP on what they want you to do and when the EMT-Ps will take over.That would be the best time to find out where everything is(if you don't already know-it could happen) so when they are scrambling,you are trying to find what they needed two seconds ago.
    When riding with Memphis Fire Department as an EMT-IV student,they wanted me to take the vitals,(while they were monitoring them with the electronics)and do patient contact as they observed.For my first "live fire" IV stick,the EMT-P did take over that because my hands were shaking badly enough I couldn't possibly have done a painless stick.I'd never done it before except with a dummy arm.
    When they are doing the actual work beyond your scope,watch what they are doing(obvious,isn't it?)and try to save questions beyond "Where is what you want stowed" until after any crisis has passed.There are jobs that can be self initiated,though.One call,people kept trying to look inside so I stationed myself at the back window so the cameras couldn't violate the patient's privacy.The licensed crew didn't even notice anything was going on and I figured the public didn't need to have a record of that patient's pain,so my wide shoulders were pressed against the glass.I told them while we were en route between re-assessments and they were pretty appreciative of it.Not all news coverage is favorable.
    If you get time for chow,be sure to buy your own or buy into the station's meal kitty.
    Good luck with it.
    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    I am starting to do ride alongs with a nearby ALS service this saturday, the last time i did one I was an in class EMTB student. I've been operating in the field for 6 months on a BLS service where it is pretty easy to take control of the situation for the most part. What I need is some advice on handling calls with 2 Paramedics and me(the basic). Should I await orders from them or how shall I operate without stepping on their toes (I need to make a good impression since I would like this to be my future employer). PLEASE help!

  15. #15
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    470

    Default

    Ask what their company policy and medical protocols allow a non-employee/non-student to do on a ride-along. With my dept, a student sponsored by our medical center that sets our protocols (or one with an agreement with them) can operate within their scope. However, Joe Q Public ride-along (regardless of certs) is strictly an observer.

    If you are allowed to do basic level tasks, here's a thing that our basics do that help the medics (again, check to make sure a basic is allowed to perform all these tasks within the scope of the local and company protocols):

    V - Vitals
    O - Oxygen
    M - Monitor (get them set up on the Lifepak)
    I - Interventions and IV Prep (spike/hang bag, flush line, open start pack, etc.)
    T - Transport (package the patient and help monitor them for the ride)

  16. #16
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    9

    Default

    712:
    You're a nice kid and all...but why do you have a question for every little thing? What's next? " Can someone tell me how many times I have to wipe before I'm clean?" Use some common sense please.

  17. #17
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by johnnyholmes View Post
    712:
    You're a nice kid and all...but why do you have a question for every little thing? What's next? " Can someone tell me how many times I have to wipe before I'm clean?" Use some common sense please.
    These questions for everything are a way of seeing how different people operate in different areas and see many kinds of advice rather than just locals. I'm not sure why you even posted this but thanks for calling me nice!
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  18. #18
    Forum Member
    GTRider245's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Augusta,GA
    Posts
    3,064

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    These questions for everything are a way of seeing how different people operate in different areas and see many kinds of advice rather than just locals. I'm not sure why you even posted this but thanks for calling me nice!
    He is saying most things you will learn as you go. You dont need to ask before you do everything.
    Career Firefighter
    Volunteer Captain

    -Professional in Either Role-

    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    I don't mind fire rolling over my head. I just don't like it rolling UNDER my a**.

  19. #19
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    These questions for everything are a way of seeing how different people operate in different areas and see many kinds of advice rather than just locals. I'm not sure why you even posted this but thanks for calling me nice!
    Read this ^ ^
    Quote Originally Posted by GTRider245 View Post
    He is saying most things you will learn as you go. You dont need to ask before you do everything.
    I like to learn as much as I can from a wide variety of different people. There are many people in EMS and we all have different ways of operating or looking at things. So forgive me if I would like to see what everyone thinks/does to expand my knowledge.
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  20. #20
    MembersZone Subscriber
    rpferry's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Orlando,Fl
    Posts
    400

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    Read this ^ ^


    I like to learn as much as I can from a wide variety of different people. There are many people in EMS and we all have different ways of operating or looking at things. So forgive me if I would like to see what everyone thinks/does to expand my knowledge.
    Hey Bro,
    If you want to learn just start reading through these threads and fire trade magazines. I got on this site before I registered years ago and read as much as I could every day. I looked at it like a class, reading and leaning and never discussing unless I felt I had to. A lot of what you're asking can be found here and elsewhere, you just have to put in some time and look for it. Speaking of putting in time, it's getting close for you to quit posting for a little while and sit back and learn. Just my .02 cents though. Good luck with your probie year.
    -Rob
    Greater love has no man than to lay his life down for a friend.

  21. #21
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Memphis Tn,USA-now
    Posts
    5,436

    Default

    Though there are some questions that you can figure out yourself,there is NEVER anything wrong with asking just to make sure.Don't let those that think you should never ask even if you think you know already keep you from asking.They aren't there and they aren't in the learning process that you are.
    It'll make you a better rounded EMT-P.You might learn something not taught in the syllabus that you can take back to the class to pass on.
    Oh,and if someone says "You will see this material again" as they perform a technique,watch closely and take notes.It's probably going to be on the test,at least the one he/she took.
    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    Read this ^ ^


    I like to learn as much as I can from a wide variety of different people. There are many people in EMS and we all have different ways of operating or looking at things. So forgive me if I would like to see what everyone thinks/does to expand my knowledge.

  22. #22
    Forum Member
    FireEMT712's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rural IL
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by doughesson View Post
    Though there are some questions that you can figure out yourself,there is NEVER anything wrong with asking just to make sure.Don't let those that think you should never ask even if you think you know already keep you from asking.They aren't there and they aren't in the learning process that you are.
    It'll make you a better rounded EMT-P.You might learn something not taught in the syllabus that you can take back to the class to pass on.
    Oh,and if someone says "You will see this material again" as they perform a technique,watch closely and take notes.It's probably going to be on the test,at least the one he/she took.
    My philosophy is the only dumb questions are the ones you didn't ask.
    Firefighter/EMT 712
    NREMT
    Gifford Fire And Rescue
    6 month Probie
    Medic Student

  23. #23
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    2,970

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    My philosophy is the only dumb questions are the ones you didn't ask.
    My philosophy is that YOU (not specifically you) are dumb if you don't ask the question for which you don't have the answer, because in my experience the dumb questions are not the ones not asked.

    Ever watch a press conference regarding a high profile PD incident?

  24. #24
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Philly
    Posts
    389

    Default

    There are NO dumb questions.

































    But there are a LOT of inquisitive idiots!
    Opinions expressed are mine alone, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Philadelphia Fire Department and/or IAFF Local 22.

  25. #25
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    213

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireEMT712 View Post
    My philosophy is the only dumb questions are the ones you didn't ask.
    Live a little longer and your philosophy will change.

    Like the time my significant other walked in and saw me viewing something questionable on the PC in a state of undress and she said...."What are you doing???"

    There are dumb questions...

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. In need of advice...
    By lostnfound in forum Meet and Greet
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 01-08-2003, 09:07 AM
  2. IAFF & Tactical Medics
    By FDPappy in forum Firefighters Forum
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 06-26-2001, 01:17 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Log in

Click here to log in or register