Monday, July 24, 2017

Clipboard Commandos


                                 Almost actual size, but it's not this new and shiny here.

New gig at Shoestring Hospital, in Teeny Weeny ER.

Small, hella-busy, still same old fun.

Except for (wait for it) all the ancillary BS hoops to jump through to start.
Wait, it gets better.

So busy and short-handed, your contract started yesterday. (What's that? You never signed one? Don't worry, we'll get around to that...in a coupla months. Maybe.)
But here's your log-in to complete the same 42 online modules (on my time and nickel, apparently) before you start.
Because the ones you just did for our sister hospital in the same system don't count, because the left hand and the right hand in this fucktarded corporate lash-up don't talk to each other.

How...special.

So, after pounding my head against the monitor for three weeks trying to follow their instructions, it turns out they assigned me no account, so couldn't log-in to the education site, which helpdesk line is so secret, no one in the entire hospital knows it or has ever heard of it, until we reach the threats-of-suspension stage, and it will suddenly leave them exactly as short-staffed as they were before I started, and suddenly shit gets real for them.

Whereupon they "suddenly" discover the secret helpdesk number, and I then find out all the courses they assigned to me in the first place three weeks ago were the wrong ones, and not the ones they've been telling me that I haven't completed, because I couldn't log in, and they never assigned the right ones in the first place.

Because they're all a bunch of chronically and blisteringly incompetent fuckups.

This is my shocked face. I didn't name this place Shoestring Hospital and Teeny Weeny ER for nothing, and Incompetence is one of the core values here.

If I did nursing like they do administration, the dead bodies would be piled up around here like firewood. (And, in all likelihood, they soon will be anyways. But that's another ten stories.)

This will be a short contract. If they ever give me one to sign before I finish it.

And they wonder why they can't find anyone besides brand new grads desperate for a job to become full-time staff? And why they all leave after 366 days?




Monday, July 17, 2017

$#!^ Happens. And You Brought...?





Summer in SoCal is everything you've heard about. Really.
I'm off for the weekend. Cruising down the street listening to my own song mix. The birds are singing. Not a cloud in the sky. And over there is a white haired woman face down in the street. Not a care in...

WTF? Why is grandma doing the dead fish impression off the edge of the curb?

So I pull over smartly, hop out with my first aid kit from behind the seat, and step over to where she lies.
She is, happily for both of us, conscious and breathing, so we chat.

Turns out moments ago (Why in front of me? Just lucky like that...) she negotiated a tall curb badly coming out of the jewelry store, tripped, with both feet on the curb, and fell to the street. As she's telling me this, and giving the okay for help, I tenderly pull her out of the traffic lane in which she was laying, noting her bilateral ankle pain and tenderness.

(And nota bene, total number of helpful bystanders who come over to assist, in front of three open business...zero, start to finish. Plan on that and you'll never be disappointed.)

I'm in town, and can call 9-1-1 while simultaneously cracking a couple of ice packs, after assuring myself that her feet have good pulses, are warm, and she can wiggle her toes. While also noticing she's probably broken both her ankles, at the tender age of 70-something.

So rather than having to splint both of her lower legs, I can wait the 110 seconds it takes for the city's red-engine pride to arrive, while I gather a quick history and baseline vitals, less BP, because I can hear the truck coming before I could deploy the cuff.

She is gently loaded on a gurney, to be whisked to the local ER, in little more than the time it took to write this, and other than handing the lead paramedic all the meat and potatoes of his run report, I'm done, and ready to depart. It also helps that he and the captain both recognize me from multiple contacts in that same ER, even though I'm not in scrubs at the moment.

The point, gentle reader, is that $#!^ happens anywhere. Are you prepared for that? You'll use a first aid kit in your lifetime one helluva lot more often than a gun, so whether or not you have a CCW and a weapon, where's your aid kits?
D'ya know what to do after you grab it?
Note I said kits, not kit. If you have a weapon, you should have an IFAK/blow-out kit on your body, as well as a mini-kit, and a disasterpiece theatre SHTF kit in the car, 24/7/365.
Mayhem doesn't send warning notices. He just shows up.


Can you quickly assess, evaluate, and treat someone you come across who needs medical attention? How about when you go shooting? (Of course, we know you'll never have an accident, because infallibility, but what about all those other jackasses waving guns around? Haven't you seen the bullet holes everywhere but downrange??)

Everybody carries one of these:
Okay, nice, provided you've got contact bars.
Some of you carry one of these:
Cool. Now, use it to stop bleeding. Can't do that?
Maybe it's time for one of these:
And one of these is even better.
For some problems, there's no other work around. You simply must have the proper tool, or you can't do the job. And waving your gun, or your arms, (or some other worthless anatomy) at the problem won't fix things.

Please, don't be that guy.
Naked and Afraid isn't even much good as a reality show, but it's orders of magnitude worse as a plan for coping with emergencies.

As a wiser man teaching field medical care once pithily explained,
"If you ain't got a kit, you ain't got $#!^."

Not the happiest ending in this case, but better than it could have ended.
Life happens. Tag, you're it...

Friday, April 14, 2017

Free At Last, Free At Last



Triple contract is over!
Loved the people. Loved the days. HATED the drive time.

I'll probably go back in a few months, if they need me.
(But definitely asking for the housing deal next time.)

39 weeks. 110 or so shifts.
So about 1000 to 1500 more hands-on patients.
And they trusted me enough to put me in triage for three weeks straight at the end.
Helluva ride there, and I'll miss all the familiar faces. It's going to be interesting to see how many of them are still there, if and when I go back down the road.

But eight whole days in a row off work??

LUXURY!

Later, taters. Happy Easter.