After the last post Cookie left a comment asking if I still wanted to leave my job…
We were sent on blue lights and sirens to a young woman who had 'collapsed'. We arrived and found her writhing around on the floor. She wasn't too happy to talk to us, instead she kept pretending to be unconscious.
It transpired that she was having period pain.
My crewmate (who is female) asked her if she had taken any painkillers for it, after some grunting, groaning and flailing around she was told that, no, the patient hadn't taken any painkillers.
“Do you have painkillers?”, asked my crewmate.
“Yes”, said the patient and named a rather good painkiller.
“Why haven't you taken them then?”
The patient then pretended to be unconscious.
We asked a couple of times, at no point did she answer. Instead she kept 'passing out' in a way that wouldn't win her any Oscars.
So we popped her in the carry-chair (because otherwise she would be throwing herself about) and popped her to the hospital.
She was given two Paracetamol tablets and sat out in the waiting room.
By London Ambulance Service numbers, 8 out of 10 of our jobs are like this, not needing an ambulance or hospital treatment. I think I get more than my fair share. I find myself going to people younger than me, often healthier than me and yet having to carry them downstairs because their 'flu' makes them unable to walk.
I'm glad I don't have 'proper' jobs all the time, I also like it when my patient can walk on and off my ambulance at both ends of the journey. What does happen is that these 'inappropriate' calls* eventually grind you down, the endless parade of people who don't need any of the skills I have except the ability for me to write down what they say and drive them to hospital.
I knew it would be like this before I joined the job.
It's not the main reason why I want to change jobs, not by a long chalk, I'd say it's around reason #17. But the jobs that make me want to stay, the serious jobs where I can make a difference, are few and far between.
*Of course there are, according to people on much higher payscales than me, no 'inappropriate callers', only 'inappropriate responses'. Which is why we spend so much money on dealing with people who don't need hospital treatment but can't be bothered to see their GP or local walk in centre. At times it seems to be our main focus as an ambulance service.