November 16, 2010

And a New Chapter Begins

They called yesterday and offered me the job :)

Luckily, at my old job, I was able to get all next week off, so this is my last week with my current employer, then I start orientation with my new one on the 29th, with 3 weeks of orienatation, followed by a lengthy FTO time.

And it begins.

November 11, 2010

In Over My Head?

So, the company I interviewed with last week? I know a medic there and he emailed me their protocols, or they call them "guidelines" to get rid of cookbook medicine.

And after a read-through, jeez I feel over my head.

Just some examples that they have that ALL their Paramedics can / are expected to do;
Needle AND surgical crichs
LMAs for their Paramedics
Oral and nasal gastric tube placement
Foley catheter placement.... in the field.
(Critical Care medics also have escharotomies and pericardiocentesis)

The average Paramedic also has the following drugs on their truck (beyond the norm)
Acetominophen for fever AND mild pain
Calcium gluconate
Vasotec for CHF
Etomidate (obvious due to RSI)
Pepcid for allergic reactions
Nitro drips
Rocuronium (again, RSI)
Tetracaine (for pepper spray)

So, needless to say, I feel out of my league here. I know they'll cover it in the 3-week long orientation + 1-2 months of FTO, but it still feels like a lot.

Oh well, all that's left is to wait for my references to be contacted and hopefully I get the job offer soon.

November 6, 2010

Interview time part deux

So, I had the interview yesterday. I woke up at 5:15 to be out the door by 5:45. The interview location is about 2 and a half hours away, but I also took in to account traffic going through Dallas at the time of the morning. I got to the location just before 8am... so I had an hour to kill just listening to music in my car.

Come 8:45 I went to the building and walked in. The receptionist pointed me to a door leading to the back saying "EMS is back there". I walked on back and met my interviewer, the Ground Operations manager.

He took me to another room and said that the HR lady would be a little bit, but that'd we get started on the mega code and trauma scenario...Crap, I didn't know I was going to be tested! I've only ever done one real life cardiac arrest since starting EMT class back in August of 2008... and I'm now a Paramedic in November of 2010. Yup.. white cloud. I let him know it too. He said not to worry, just run through the ACLS protocols and I'll be fine.

Ran through the code, stumbled a bit from nervousness, but he said I did fine. Went on to the trauma call which was an MVC with the patient walking around complaining of SOB. After listening to lung sounds, I determined he had a collapsed lung, so I told my interviewer that I'd do a chest needle decompression. He asked where, I said 5th intercostal midaxilary. He asked where else I could do it, and I said 2nd/3rd midclavicular. He said good job.

The HR lady finally came and he told her I did "fantastically" on the scenarios. They proceeded to ask me the usual EMS interview questions like "Name a time that your decision to do something didn't work right, and what you did to make it work" and the usual.

At the end, they made it seem like I got the job. They said they would love me to start orientation on the 15th, but understood that I had to give my current employer 2 weeks notice, so they want me to start on the 29th instead. Discussed pay and benefits and the like as well. Afterwords, they sent me to an outside location for my UA drug test.

3 weeks of orientation (5 days a week, 9-5), followed by 1-2 months of FTO time. Finally, an employer that takes FTO time seriously. It's a well respected agency around here that is hospital based.

Downside? Orientation is at a city 3 hours drive away. Now I'm just trying to figure out what to do. It will cost me about $170 a week in gas if I make the trip every day from my house. I would have to leave at 5:30 am and get hom at about 8:30 pm on average. 6 hours of driving for 8 hours of orientation. OR I could spend A LOT more money and get a hotel room, say Mon-Thurs nights, and come home on the weekends... but like I said, alot more money.

But once orientation is done, all will be good. He said I will most likely get put in their furthest west city that is not only closer to me by 45 minutes (meaning less than an hour and a half drive... for 24hour shifts, not bad) but it's also fairly busy so I'll get good experience.

So, barring my background check showing I'm a wanted axe murderer, or my UA test showing I took illicit drugs without me ever knowing, I should hopefully be starting a new leg in my career as a Paramedic at the end of the month. Finally.

November 4, 2010

Interview time

FINALLY got an interview at a well respected 911 EMS agency, set for tomorrow morning. It's 2.5 hours away from where I live, and the interview is at 9am, so that means I have to be out my door no later than 6am... which to most people doesn't sound too bad, but my usual shift at my current employer is 3p-3a, which means I'm usually just getting to sleep at 6am.

And after the interview, I have my normal shift on my truck. That makes it pretty much a 24hour awake day for me. Oh yeah, and I'm sick. Fun.

Oh well, wish me luck. Hopefully I get on with this agency, or learn something that will help me get on with another one real soon.