Ok, something a little different…

Ask me questions in the comments field for this posting. Just leave a comment with your question and your name. If you don't have a reader account (which you can make following the link from the top right of this page) then you can log on as 'guest' with a password of 'guest'. You can leave more than one question, but depending on response I may answer only the first one you ask.

I'll answer them this weekend. Now is your chance to get that burning question to me off your chest.

(Try not to be *too* rude).

139 thoughts on “Questions”

  1. U&E's = Urea and electrolytes: Basic blood test to assess the acid-base balance of the blood and picks up on a good few common disorders. (sorry, couldnt help it, Im a paramedic too, and ex-nurse)Ali- bluebightbabe ;- seeing as I cant log in!

    BTW, loved the book, now being passed around my station in sheffield

  2. That's called loving people, but hating what they do. I struggle with that too, which is why I enjoy reading this blog so much.

  3. If you could meet one person from the whole of history and either shake them by the hand or kick them in the reproductive organs, who would it be and which would you do?Matt

  4. Hey Tom – read DaBook, it's wicked and currently on loan to a mate of mine who wants to be a Paramedic.Question for you, how do you like to unwind and relax after a long (bad) shift?


  5. Here's one for you Tom;”I've walked ten miles through North London barefoot in the rain.” – You, in your 'about me' page.

    For the love of God, WHY?!

  6. I was gonna do these individually, but decided that that was too obnoxious, even for me. 'Sides, that might allow you to sneak by with one or two unanswered, and that'll be much harder this way. Looking forward to your answers, BT. () ;-)1. How many miles must a man walk down – before he can say he's a man, that is?

    2. Which one of us is cooler?

    3. Does Robert ask about me regularly?

    4. Why do fools fall in love?

    5. What is the ultimate question?

    6. During my next trip to London (sometime in 2007), will you be a) as nice, b) nicer, or c) less nice to me than you were during my first trip?

    7. Do androids dream of elctric sheep?

    8. Do you?

    9. When are you coming back to Seattle?

    10. If a hen and a half can lay an egg and a half in a day and a half, how long will it take a monkey with a wooden leg to kick the seeds out of a dill pickle?

    11. Will you autograph my book?

  7. I am starting medicine in September and was wondering how you get on with the medics to whom you hand over your patients, how do you rate your skills against theirs, In what way do they differ? Do medics get a chance to go out with you and see what you do and thus get an idea of what the patient has been through before they get to hospital.Thanks for any insight you are able to give me

    Ian Pope

  8. Has your recent “fame” changed you in any way? And what tips would you give someone wanting to have a book published?

  9. Hi TomTry and explain this for me……

    You seem to be slightly schizophrenic. Your blog was originally called “Why I Hate Humanity” :-), and you frequently say in your blog posts that you hate everyone the same.

    BUT you come across as a really caring guy, who doesn't hate everyone at all, in fact you quite obviously care about everyone.

  10. Bless your heart, are you going to brave it, forget the shyness, and ask one of your many lady-friends on here out, and get yourself a date? If you use the same technique as you did for your sky interview you will overcome the shyness. You are too nice a bloke not to have a significant other (or two!!!) ;0) a lot of them have seen you now (some mentioned how cute you are)(I'd be more inclined to say you had a nice face and a nice way about you, I do feel the expression “cute” should be left to puppies and kittens!!) it might be worth pursuing a few lines of enquiry?????

  11. OK, we know you're no fan of speed bumps and we know the LAS isn't either. Now I'm a Newham resident too and I know just how much the Newham traffic engineers (although it's an insult to *real* engineers to call them that) love speed bumps. They love them so much so that that they build them up to twice the legal size. I've been blue lighted in one of your fine taxis and I can attest to just how much grief speed bumps add to the experience.Now we know that Newham don't think that ambulances bouncing around with critically ill people in them is a good enough reason for getting rid of the bumps – they've been asked in the past. So, has anybody ever tried getting the damned things ripped up on the basis that they've been constructed in breach of the regulations?

    Oh, and don't you think Robin Wales would make a good speed bump? πŸ™‚

  12. Do you think your experiences, that you've written about here (and in your book) are typical of ambulance drivers and/or paramedics in the LAS?Do you think your experiences are typical of ambulance work in general (eg, other locations in the UK, other countries, other specialties like Helicopter Air Ambulance or military medic)?

    Thanks for the great blog, I always manage to enjoy my time here much more than those other things I should be doing.

  13. So here in the US a 30 year old woman who drives a NYC taxi and blogs is also publishing a book based on the buzz created by her writing. Have no idea if the two of you would hit it off romantically, but bet you'd make a great comedy team. So your book takes off, Hollywood comes knocking, and you get to cast the actor who will play you; discounting Nicholas Cage who already made a middling ambulance/emt movie, who do you choose? And of course there needs to be a leading lady–and she would be….?

  14. How would you like to work in ambulance comms, like us poor folk stuck in this red hot room whilst you have all the fun on the road??

  15. When'll the free online version of the book be put up? Or is it up already and I'm too stupid to find it?Also will the book ever be sold in the US? I don't really want to drop $20 (10.52) on it since I know you won't receive nearly that much into your pocket, since the amazon uk is selling the book for what, 3.99?

    Also, have you ever (or ever seriously considered) hurting someone or delaying their care due to their conduct? I'm guessing that this answer is no since I whole-heartedly believe you would never do any such thing, but you never know.

    I'm Andrew, btw.

  16. Do you think about what you're going to write about in your blog, and how you're going to write it, before you sit down at your computer – or even while the events are actually taking place? I wonder if you have a “running commentary” in your head?Jo, London, UK

  17. I have been keeping an eye on your Blog for approx 2 yrs now. Think you have wit and kindness and good since to turn it into a good thing. Now that the Good thing… this Blog, has made it possible for you to have a few good returns… Profits from your book. What new fun item are you going to take up as a way to open up (ie new leisure pursuits) on your off hours? Stamp collecting, Motorbike tours, Fishing Expeditions etc.?Keith L. in Los Angeles <><

    PS I too hate speed bumps with a passion

    (yes from the back of an ambulance too)

  18. 1) Why can't I log on?2) Do you write these things as they happen or store up the “good” ones to keep the blog ticking over?

    3) Do you agree that a 14 gauge cannula is an acceptable means of discovering whether a patient is feigning unconsciuosness?

    4) You mentioned you hadn't cannulated for a few years and declined the offer of cannulating a patient recently (in da book). Do LAS EMT's routinely cannulate or were you referring back to your A&E days?

    Cheers, BTW Nan Down is becoming a stock phrase in this area!!!???!!! ;o)

  19. I'm currently a 2nd yr student nurse, but since reading your blogs, and having to assist in accidents I've managed to stumble accross, I've decided I would much rather be doing what you are doing!Any tips for getting a job? (I'm finishing my nursing course first) I have tried contacting the local ambulance service but I have yet to hear anything from them….They are only round the corner but I don't think wandering into the station is a good idea…(PS, your book is on my birthday wish list – as I cannot buy it anywhere I go!)

  20. Having watched 'Bringing out the dead' if they make a movie of your book get Nicholas Cage to play the spine board and Calista Flockhart the straps. You should play yourself.Honestly can't think of a question. Still looking for the book.

  21. Was I wrong to call 999?Last week an elderly lady fell down some concrete steps backwards right in front of me. There are only four or five steps but she kind of wobbled half way up lost her balance and fell backwards. I saw her bang her head. I did first aid years ago but can't remember much. I went over to her when the fun began! She was deaf! I was extremely concerned because I couldn't communicate with her. After some help from the local cancer shop which we were in front of, we sat her on a chair (I was reluctant to move her immeditely) someone got her some water – (I wasn't sure if this was a good thing???) and I basicially held her hand (inspected her head – wasn't bleeding) and tried to communicate with her (unsucessfully it seemed). I then proceeded to tell the lady that I was calling an ambulance for her because I was concerned for her – she seemed to know what I was saying. Anyway since Im waffling – FRU (I guess) turned up – inspected her, had the same fun as I did trying to communicate (I have now decided to learn sign language) – said she didn't need to go to hospital and instead took her to her deaf club where she had been heading.

    I did feel guilty about calling 999 but think I would have felt more guilty not and just leaving her to go on her way.


    ps that afternoon I phoned the deaf club – she was ok – albeit shaken up and was playing bingo! I would like to meet her again but not in the same circumstances!!!

  22. Have you chosen not to be a paramedic? I know you prefer to be in the ambulance rather than the rapid response car, is that anything to do with it?Do you think paramedics get better training via the EMT route of the degree route? I reckon the former if nursing is anything to go by. Regards, Vidora

  23. I am part of the SJA team that assists out of Oldham & occasionally Newham. Yes, you've probably seen us when you clock off as we're in the day shift business.For those who don't know, St John Ambulance volunteers can take an ambulance care course that covers us to do basic ambulance work. We speed about on blues (but without the countryside training in a 17 seater minibus), take orders from Control and attend all sorts of stuff (I've had two 'suspended' that have been reported as 'hurt foot' or 'collapsed' and have been both green jobs). We can't pronounce death, we adhere to SJA protocols (we get a paramedic on scene as soon as we get our FR2 out) and we can't transport anyone without a heartbeat.

    How do you feel about us?

    (To the most part everyone I've spoken to on LAS has been very pleasant to us – I wonder if I've ever spoken to you…)

  24. oh and I bought your book yesterday for the princely sum of 7.99 from waterstones. Wish I could have got it from Amazon but my holiday with my other fellow SJA's is tomorrow.I feel the same about pedestrians when on blue lights…

  25. Hi,I've only just started reading your site so forgive me if you've covered this elsewhere (I'm going through the archives while the book is on order), I've heard you describe you vehicle as a Materni-taxi, and I've seen a couple of mentions of it being used for that purpose, but have you ever had an actual unplanned front room delivery to deal with? I ask because I had a very quick and pain free labour, so was genuinely surprised to be handed this tiny human in the delivery room – I assumed I was having Braxton Hicks. I don't know why I was so surprised as it seems to be genetic (Mum had two out of four amublance babies). Anyhow, just wondering if you had treated anyone who had stayed at home until the last possible moment only to discover that moment passes pretty quickly.

    By the way, this is in no way a dig, just for some reason I want to be re-assured that it does happen sometimes!

    Rosie x

  26. In Casualty (yes, I can hear you groaning already, but please stay with me!) when blood tests are ordered they usually ask for “U”s and “E”s (or is it Use and Ease?)What are they on about, and what are the other common blood tests?

    Thanks! Sorry it's not an ambulance related query but I've been wondering this for ages.

    from Flash Wilson

  27. Hey Tom, you're gonna have fun this weekend with the questions so far – there's some good one's there. I'll be interested to read your answers. I know how I'd answer some.To add a few more: it'd be good to know a little more about the LAS set up

    1) Are there no paras on the bus/trucks then?

    2) and is that why you've not put yourself forward for para training?

    3) What's the relationship between the crews and HEMS now? used to be sh*t

    4) Are ECPs still around in LAS (the rumour mill says they've been made redundant and re-employed as paras).

    5) Can you guys thrombolyse STEMI patients?

    6) Are you up for a (non-alcoholic) beer when I'm next in town?

    Happy answering!

  28. Hi TomHas the success of this blog and your book had any impact on your professional life and dealings with colleagues / patients, in either a positive or negative way?

    Btw – great blog!

  29. What's the most embarassing crush you've ever had? (eg, school teacher etc)What's your earliest childhood memory?

    If you were to meet your dad now, what's the first thing you would do/say? (You don't have to answer that if it's too personal or could be used against you later in a court of law)

    Love the blog Tom (still weird trying to call you anything else!), hope I never require your services!

  30. Maybe this should be for Nee Naw Man, but there you go :)If you dial 999 on your mobile by accident, while it's in your pocket, when you realise (eg you hear the call taker saying “Hello?”) is it better to end the call, or is it better to explain and hang up?

  31. If I may answer for him:If you dial 999 by mistake, simply explain the operator, otherwise (according to the local protocol), the call may be dealt with as someone who lost consciousness or is in a dire emergency situation (e.g. held at gunpoint). This may lead to a lot of people getting worried and trying to trace you…

    On the other option, you simply explain the operator that you forgot to lock the keys of the mobile before sandwiching it between your **** and the seat…


    Andrew (an EMT looong ago, now an MD)

  32. 1. What is the worse injury you have ever seen?2. What is the most painful injury?

    3. If I chopped my little finger off with a big knife, would it be life threatening?

    4. If you were in your ambulance on the way to a call and you came across a serious road accident that had only just happened, would you stop for that or drive on to the original call while radioing for another ambulance?


  33. If you had the choice between sweating peanut butter (the chunky variety) or having a hairy tongue, which would you choose?Loyal Reader (Nick)

  34. You are alway complaining about the 8 minute rule but you never say what you think might be a good target.Do you have any ideas?Reading 'Da Book' and think it's great – already have two others who 'll be borrowing it from me.

  35. you sound like a great bloke to work with. want to come and do a week with me at Y.A.S? kind of 'work-exchange' thing, see how the other half live! (same dross, different accent)

  36. Would you recommend LAS as a job to anyone? And if so, do LAS do things like ride-alongs so you can get a bit of an idea what you're letting yourself in for?

  37. Out of all the drugs that people take of a Saturday (or Monday, Tuesday etc) night, which one creates the people that are the biggest pains in the ass to deal with?

  38. damn right! Not me, I'm long-term and happily spoken for, but dammit Tom, you are total eligible bachelor and were I but single and London-based… and there's plenty other ladies on here who find you just as charming.In other news, a strange red glow is reported in the Newham area πŸ˜‰

  39. Do you ever find yourself watching episodes of Casualty and trying to diagnose things before they do, or shouting at the TV when they do it wrong?

  40. What's your favourite bit / song from Bugsy Malone? (a classic film, I noticed it on your wishlist!)What's your favourite food and who (living or dead) would you like to share a dinner party / date with?

    Thanks for a great blog!

    Ali x

  41. Hi,What's your favourite holiday destination and activity? ( not *too* rude remember!) Ever been to Canada? I ( Uk born) now live in BC on Vancouver Island where today its blue skies, 28'c, gorgeous scenery and seems like one long holiday.

    One thing you'ld like here is when the blue lights flash, the law is that everyone pulls over and stops, so everyone does, even on major highways.

    I love the blog, Tom keep it up. As a North London trained RN, ( more years ago than I'd care to admit to) it makes me want to dust off the flat shoes, get out the fob watch and put the uniform back on. There's something adictive in working in a job where you never know what the day will bring. Never dull, that's for sure.

  42. Hi Tom,What made you get out of the hospital and onto the roads with the ambulance service? and do you have any regrets?


  43. Hi Tom,I was wondering if you could help me out. I suffer from regular headaches which I think are a result of sinus problems. This started happening after my dad and I got beaten up in the street completely unprovoked.

    I've been to the doctor's and he's given me nose sprays for the last 18 months which don't seem to work.

    Anything else that could be causing them?



  44. Only one question?? I don't think I can do that. I have so many.*thinks*

    Does Tom do things that Brian wouldn't?


    What motivated you to go into healthcare (in any form) to begin with, and does it still motivate you now?

  45. I give in, I can't stick to two. You'll just have to ignore one. Sorry..How does all *this* make you feel (by “this” I refer to thousands of readers hanging on your every word, the TV appearances, the adoring fans..)? It must be almost otherworldly.

  46. Re Question from Dave GoodmanGood question – about after your five minutes of fame the laydeez in East London are dropping their panties at 50 paces?!?


  47. We had a patient recently who was >200kg and needed an MRI, but was too big to fit in our scanner. Rumour had it that they were taken to London Zoo to use the RhinoScan (or whatever it's called) in the dead of night….Have you taken anyone to the zoo lately, or is this another one of those urban myths…?H

  48. sorry not a comment…. Just wanted to say a BIG thanks.. I am a A & E nurse and absolutely loving your book and your blogs….. I have one complaint thought,,,, everyone wants me to hurry up and finish the book tho cause they want it and i cant get anyone to do any work on nights cause they are reading your blogs!!Its ace to get a insite as to what goes on before you bring the punters into us !!!

    I now understand a bit better why you all look a bit disrevelled and harrassed……

    Thanks again


  49. Hi Tom,I thought about this all the way home on the train and excluding the deeply personal questions I'm sure you wouldn't answer any way I would like to know:

    1) Did the police dog handlers teach you the deeply criminal technique of opening locked doors in 10 seconds ? ( Not that I want to know how, I'm just curious…)

    2) I've been reading this blog for about 2 weeks now and have noticed that it is advertising a book that you are reading. Are you enjoying it?

    I hope you have the weekend off because otherwise this may take longer than you anticipated.

    x pp

  50. U&Es genereally consist of urea, creatinine, sodium and potassium. Creatinine is mainly used to assess kidney function. Urea mostly relates to kidney function but is more easily affected by dehydration. Sodium and potassium are important for assessing fluid balance and blood pressure. Abnormal levels of potassium (both low and high) can cause heart problems.The previous post is not entirely correct – none of these tests can tell you the acid-base status of the patient (you need arterial blood gas measurements for that), but some of them might help work out the *cause* of an acid-base disturbance.

    Other commom blood tests include:

    *FBCs – Full blood count – checks levels of red bloods cells, different tyoes of white cells and haemoglobin – can tell you if the patient is anaemic or has an infection

    * LFTs – Liver Function Tests – Show damage to (NOT function of) the liver – very badly named!

    *CRP – high values suggest infection or inflammation

  51. MINE [are] IS THE BEST QUESTION[s]!Ok, me, a future Paramedic. I got a place on the Cadet Scheme. Starting my 6 week induction on Monday πŸ˜€ What advice would you give to me [I'll be working on various wards for two years] and how do the wards compare to Ambulance work? AND is inserting a catheter into the bladder difficult? [first few times]

  52. posted by ramp rattom, how did you broach the subject of this blog with your employers? were you worried about their reaction? and what the hell is a “womble”?

    love the blog, plan to purchase the book. god bless.

  53. Tom,A mate is about to take the paramedic entrance exams – do you know how tough the basic numeracy test is and what does it cover?

    Also is “The Girl” as wonderful in real life as she is in her blog?

    btw Thanks for a cracking blog


  54. No questions here, I came onto this blog a couple of weeks back via the BBC and have been slowly slogging through the archives since – just finished and wanted to say thanks for your writings here and for doing the job you do.My work brings me to your neck of the woods sometimes, so in the nicest possible way, I hope we never have cause to meet through our employment!



  55. I don't have a question, I just wanted to say I am SO looking forward to reading some of the answers!I have read your book – really enjoyed it. I have lent it to my Mum who heard you on Radio Lincolnshire & 'took to you'

    All the best

  56. Just a couple1) What were the first words that came to mind when you saw how many questions there were ?2) Do the FRU's serve any real purpose (forgetting the bikes in central london for the moment)

  57. 1. Why do ambulances have about 10 different sirens? Surely just a couple would be enough?2. I have seen many different types of ambulances (American shaped monsters, transits, LDV vans etc.) which is your fave and why?

  58. 1. I can accept that on the telly, Casualty, ER, etc have a duty first of all to entertain the public, but is there anything that they get consistently wrong that gets your back up?2. Salt and sauce or salt and vinegar?

  59. 1) Is the kettle at your station connected to the LAS control room so that whenever you switch it on, you get a cat A call? (like mine)2) Do you get sick to death of meeting a relative at the door of a house to be told “you'll need a chair”?(like I do)

    3) Do you get the same questions; Are you busy? What time are you on 'till? (like I do)

    Looking forward to reading the book.

  60. Now that you are famous, do you wish you'd chosen a name other than Tom Reynolds? Something a bit more…Hollywood, perhaps?!(Thought you were fabulous on Sky, btw. ;))

  61. Who would you prefer to direct the movie of your life? My vote would go for Micheal Winner.David Lynch would be my second choice, 'Control to Tom, Proceed to East London to pick up a human ear.'

  62. only vaguely related, my neighbour is a police officer, and she loves watching “the Bill” purely to pick fault with it!

  63. Probably out of line answering No1 on Tom's behalf: I used to live opposite an A&E dept, and 100 yards away from Police and Fire Stations – like people who live near railways not being disturbed by trains – my brain programmed itself to blank out sirens so as to be able to sleep undisturbed. To be fair when driving I now spend more time looking in the rear-view mirror than through the windscreen – the modulating sirens are harder to blank out than the old-style nee-naws, their disadvantage is that it's harder to tell what direction they're coming from.

  64. here in Y.A.S, since AFC was introduced, some top-band extended skill EMT's are considerably better paid than New Paras out of Uni coursexbluelightbabex

  65. Wiki WomblesWombles are the fluffy yet sadly fictional stars of a set of childrens books and later a TV series and some hit novelty records a couple of decades ago, and are fondly remembered for going round picking up the litter on Wimbledon Common (a real place in London), taking it home and recycling it into amazing and useful things.

    I can still sing several Wombles songs off by heart. All together now: Underground, overground, wombling free….

  66. May I just say that from a Melbourne, Australia point of view…same sh**, different city, is the term many of us apply to the anecdotes in this brilliant blog.

  67. My family have banned me from watching medical related programs as I find many of the situations/procedures so amusing with a favourite phrase being “what a load of crap”…LOL

  68. Hi Tom/Brian,Will you marry me?*

    *Not really – just thought it needed to be asked to complete the growing female adulation thang : )

    And real question – would you actually ever date a long-term reader of your blog (who would know a hell of a lot about you)?

    I guess that way there'd be lots to talk about on the first date – you mostly!

    From a long-term [female] reader who has no vested interests in asking that question – honest!

  69. A couple of years ago, my wife took a whole box of diazepam along with a bottle of wine. I didn't know what to do – whether a box was dangerous or not, so I called an ambulance and followed on behind in my car. Was this the right thing to do, or should I have taken her in myself?

  70. You've always tried to be anonymous as “Tom”, I heard you on Radio 5 under that name some time ago – now the book is out, your real name is getting mentioned in the press. Is this disappointing to you, and is it a problem with your work, or does it make you reconsider what you say from here on?From Flash Wilson

  71. That reminds me (about the most painful injury) – when I first dislocated my knee, my mother was told it was worse than giving birth, to give her a comparison. True, it's agonising! But is it really worse? ;-)- Flash Wilson (again, sorry)

  72. If I can be so bold as to answer these myself….1) The kettle, the toaster, the cooker, the fridge and the loos on our station all seem to be connected up to our control!!!

    2) Fed up with being met with that response & going to a punter with toothache (or similar “life threatening” emergencies who insists that they are so debilitated that they couldn't possibly WALK!!!!

    3) same questions as those day in and day out, along with “OOOhhh so they let women do this job now do they?” , “what took you so long?” (Like we often delay responding to CatA calls by doing the weekly shop at Tesco en route……) GRRrrrrrrr

  73. mate of mine's a copper, he watches the bill and says it's nice to see people in police uniforms actually pretending to police work. all he does is write out fines and tickets and other stuff that will make the local police more money for their donut fund… surprised he hasn't started a protection racket!

  74. Heya,I've been reading your blog for ages and I've decided I'd like to work in the ambulance service when i finish Sixth Form. What do you think is the best route to get in. The local university offers a degree in paramedic science but I don't know how helpful this will be. Any ideas?

    And, Squirrels or Monkeys?


  75. I have 2 teenagers. Last week my 15 year old daughter drank a quarter litre of vodka,vomited a lot and passed out. I found her and called the GP who told me to get an ambulance. I did and the lovely paramedics checked her over-blood,oygen levels and pulse- and said she was OK and didnt need to go to hospital unless I wanted to. fter a few hours she came round and remembered nothing. What are the warning signs re needing A and E if this happens again?

  76. For me it would have to be weeping cellulitus. Has a smell all its own that gets into your nostrils and throat and refuses to budge. Melina has nothing on it in my case.

  77. When you approach a set of lights it's wise to change the tone as motorists tend to acknowldge (subconcisously) the change in tone and look for you.Also putting on the third tone on a new Merc when stuck in traffic can make a pedestrian vomit!!!!

  78. Men are constantly being told 'x' sort of pain is comparable to childbirth, the question I have, is how the heck the male doctor knows? Having popped two, it can be sheer hell, or not too bad. A lot depends on length of labour as being too tired to push effectively only prolongs the agony. Also depends on how scared you are – first time around you just don't know that it's not going to get much worse after crowning – there's this fear in your mind that “OK, I just about survived that one, but can't take anything worse – just how bad can it get?”Heavily edited to avoid being gory, and apologies to Tom, I seem to have had ten pence worth on this post.

  79. Speaking of the carry chair, is it just me or do when all elderly people sit on it and you tell them to bend their legs to put their feet on the bar, do they STAIGHTEN them instead!!!!!??

  80. HaHa…. It's a nationwide thing then… We often get the “Nans & Pops” doing this, the best time is when you're carrying them down the stairs, especially if it's one of you guys decending the stairs backwards, patient on carry chair, and then you catch the slippered foot “you know where”, not so bad for us girls, but have seen a few eye watering moments form my (Male) colleagues, bless 'em. Also when assisting a Nan or Pop onto the chair they insist on reaching/grappling around behind them to find the non-existant chair arm by which to lower themselves, this has caused much amusement and embarassment, especially when the Nans realise they have just “groped” one of the “nice men in green” HeeHeeHee…… It's not all one sided though guys, As a female I have often had incidents of elderly “Pops”, trying to catch a quick glimpse down my shirt (come to think of it I've had some colleagues do this too!!!!!), Or who throw caution to the wind and go the whole hog and try for a grope (My colleagues don't do this!!!)!!!, and I've lost count of the number of “Worried” male rellies standing so close and personal behind me I can feel 'em breathing down my neck!!!

  81. 1. Do you actually get to go to scenes of accidents where you have to scoop people up off of the pavement or are you more of the response to the walking wounded who do not require intensive resusuitation efforts?2. Why is it that you've decided to give up drinking for a year?

    I'm a nurse from the USA…working in a medium sized hospital… 8 bed CCU/ICU dept.

    Have lots of contact with our paramedics who I have a great deal of respect for!

    Also wondering how you “deal” with the images of the “really bad things” without alcohol and or drugs to numb the images out of your head…

    I'm also an addict in recovery…..

    I've been clean for over 5 years from methamphetamines & alcohol.

    Never stole drugs from my patients…never took their pills or their morphine. I liked speed….got my stuff on the “black market”…

    Wondering about the whole issue of drugs and impared healthcare workers “over there”…

    How they are treated, if they are given a chance to continue working, given a second chance, ect.

    I was lucky.

    I was offered treatment. I was placed on probation and made to submit to daily phone calls for random UA's.

    I still have my job.

    I have a great deal of gratitude for the program of AA & NA…

    Wondering if you're in recovery or just abstaining…

    I also realize that this is a “HUGE” issue and one that you may not want to discuss…

    have noticed that you have an issue with the drug addicts and alcoholics that you work with…

    many in the field do…..

    Guess I just need to tell you that recovery is possible.

    Knowing full well that I'll probably get blasted…

    Love the blog, found it a while back, before the book. You're a natural on the tele. I hope you make a whole bunch of cash and can buy a big house and get the girl…

  82. Hi Tom/Brian,Very simple one. What are your life aspirations?

    Slightly harder, will you sign my book, pretty please ?

    love the blog & book


  83. I once had a kidney stone. Those of you that have ever had a kidney stone (I'm sure it's worse for men) know the excrutiating pain that you go through to pass one (which is made all the worse when you don't know what it is at first and simply think that you're gonna die).Anyway, I worked for a OBGYN at the time and she said that she had taken an informal poll of her patients that had gone through natural child-birth and had also had a kidney stone, which was worse?

    Kidney stone – hands down.

  84. Hi I was just wondering if all hospitals have a shortage of things to slide patients from the ambulance trolly to the bed? Due to madeness on someones part I ended up being rushed around three hospitals all Oldchurch trust and only one of them had a slide (not sure what the proper name for it is) and that was becuase I was in A&E is this normal?Why don't the ambulence trollys have one tucked into them somewhere?


  85. Hello Tom, It's always good to see someone else's reality especially when the ambulance service unfortunately receives such a mixed reception these days. As a psych patient and carer of another I have had some dealings with the LAS, most Ok some GOOD, and one terrible. I really don't know what was going on there. It was all about the nearest hospital. That's another story. I'll tell you if you'd like to know. Anyhow, as a result of that I've become a little involved with the LAS and am going to the Annual Public Meeting on Tuesday 26 Sept. Is there anything that you'd like me to raise as though it was coming from me? E.G. about mental health training, how to assess whether or not people are taking the p.and using the ambulance as a cab when they could have used public transport etc. etc.

    Regards and hang on in there,


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