Tag Archives: EMS

For nano: My character is an elderly man who falls in his (heated) garage. He’s found hours later by a volunteer firefighter who has some EMS training, but is alone & has no gear. The elderly man has pain in his hip (suspect broken). What is my firefighter’s course of action (after calling for backup)? What do the medics do when they get there? Does the elderly man’s hip have to be broken, or could the pain just be a bad bruise or something else?

Hey there! Thanks for your ask.  Last question first: the hip could be broken, bruised, dislocated, …. It really depends on what you want from the injury. A bruise is going to be the fastest to heal. A fracture might take months to heal.  As for what the volunteer firefighter will do…. they’re going to …

NaNo question: I was wondering if you had any resources or information on air ambulances. One of my characters drowns in a rural area and is airlifted to the hospital. His sister has been with him, doing chest compressions. I have lots of information on ambulance vehicles, so I’m mostly wondering how this would be different. Would they have less medical equipment available? Could his sister still ride along? I’d appreciate anything you have. Thanks so much!

As it happens, you’re asking a flight medic about air ambulances, so the question isn’t “do you have resources” so much as “What would you like to know?” 🙂 (I work on the ground, but I have my flight wings.)  Air ambulances come in a variety of forms, and specific loadouts are often country-, service-, and mission-specific. …

Do you know if the Los Angeles area’s EMS are “fire-based” service or some other kind e.g. volunteer or hospital-aligned? I didn’t even think to wonder until going through your archive for something else “Paramedic” tonight and finding out there’s a difference! But it has Relevance and this literally manages to apply to BOTH of my NaNo projects this year (including a minor character who’s a paramedic and pops up in both), so it’s a two-fer, heh. (PS: Hope you’re feeling better, Aunty!)

I’ve never worked in Los Angeles, so there’s that, though I had a few conversations some years ago with people who did. But my understanding is this:  –LA Fire responds to medical emergencies alongside ambulances. All LAFD firefighters are certified as EMTs, and some are certified as paramedics; they can intervene while waiting for or …

Hey Scripty, happy October – loving the blog you are doing many wonderful things. My Nano project is going to revolve around the recovery of a character who breaks his back and right femur in an aircraft crash (incomplete t-11, paraplegia and wheelchair dependency). Crash happens at an airshow so medics would be on hand; my question is what would the extraction from the wreckage of the aircraft look like, the period between the crash and getting the chara in the chopper?

Ooooooooooooooooffff. Recovering people from an airplane crash is not my forte; my people would only go to work after @scriptfirefighter ‘s kin put out the flaming wreckage and manage scene safety.  The first piece is making it safe – making sure nothing is going to go boom or set the crew on fire.  The second challenge …

Do you know if any Services have policies about what medications their paramedics are allowed to be on while on duty (+whether/how people might ignore it if they do)? B/c a lot of my NaNo will deal with mental health, and my Paramedic Character is supposed to be on Xanax for panic attacks but that’s considered “sedative” isn’t it? (I know they say be careful when driving on it!) But the message of Seeking Treatment when you’re mentally ill is important to the story so I’m reluctant to ax that.

Hey there! Thanks for your ask.  So this is often service-to-service, but the general rules are:  Your character can take pretty much anything when you’re off-duty as long as it doesn’t affect their performance at work. Your character can’t take anything that is very long-acting and that might affect their care or their driving.  Xanax …

Is there any protocol or reason for moving a patient from one hospital to another? Like say a secret service agent was injured in Oklahoma in a car crash and they have multiple broken bones. Would they have to stay in Oklahoma the whole time or would there be some point in the healing process where they could be moved to a hospital in D.C.?

*cracks knuckles* HOLD MY BEER, I GOT THIS ONE!  I am literally a transport medic. I move people between hospitals for a living. So there are definitely reasons for transporting someone between hospitals.  Most transports are fairly local, typically within 15 miles but almost* always within 100 miles.  Typical reasons for transport are: need for tests …

Likeliness of it happening aside, what happens when one twin is born in the ambulance and one twin is born at the hospital? What does the EMT/hospital do here?

Hey there! This is actually a more common occurrence than you think.  First off, remember that twins don’t typically come out all tangled up in each other. Each birth is separate, and may be five minutes to an hour apart. Also, it’s possible for the first delivery to be uncomplicated, while the second birth might …

BS Medical Tropes That Need to Die Part 4: Stealing Ambulances (With a Patient Still Inside)

Sometimes, dearest writer-friends, life imitates art. It’s happened before, in action movies, in TV shows, in books. Someone desperately needs to go somewhere. Maybe it’s chasing a bad guy, maybe it’s getting away from one. But the characters happen upon an ambulance, sitting on a scene with the engine running and, well, they just…. get …