The 2013 Massachusetts EMS Conference

The cat is out of the bag!  I am proud to announce that I will be presenting at the 2013 Massachusetts EMS Conference on October 19th in Springfield, Massachusetts! It is a great feeling to be accepted to present back in the state that I so recently left where I spent the first twelve years of my paramedic career.  The title of my presentation is “The Solution is Pollution: Using Capnography to Guide Your Treatment.”  Exciting, huh? Are you in or around Massachusetts?  Come out and take some great classes given by a number of great speakers.  Want to contribute in your own way?  Take a look at the advertising and exhibitor packages that are being offered.  The committee that puts this conference together each year is doing a great job conference is growing exponentially every year.  If you ask me, I would say that the Massachusetts EMS Conference is well on its way to becoming the premier EMS Conference in New England.  It is great to be part of it as a presenter this year. Interested in attending?  Click here!  Be sure to check out the Exclusive Facebook Pre-Sale Do you want to be an exhibitor or sponsor?  Click here! Share...

Talking with Bob Moore and Hoppy

At EMS Today I had a great opportunity to cohost with my friend Dave Aber on his podcast: EMS Classroom Conundrums.  In this episode we brought on Bob Moore and Bob Hopkins who were two of my instructors during my days at Springfield College.  It was an honor to be involved with this show, and great to talk to Bob and Hoppy about where education has been, where it is, and where it is going.  Check out the video below. Share...

EMS Today! Are You Here?

Have you made the trip to Washington, DC this year for the annual EMS Today hosted by JEMS?  If so, you should come by the JEMS booth on Friday and say hi. Friday morning, and into the early afternoon, I will be there participating in a few podcasts starting at 10am.  The podcast studio will be open and active all day on Friday and Saturday, complete with the social media lounge.  Stop by, say hi, and take in some great information! Share...

One More Week. . .

Monday night was my last shift before vacation, and now I am free until March 5th!  Free from my traditional job at least.  There is a lot going on over the next week. Next Tuesday night, I will be heading south for a night in New Jersey followed by the rest of my trip to Baltimore.  That’s right folks: Its EMS Today time!  It seems like just yesterday that I sat watching Justin Schorr and Ted Setla taking their limo ride into Baltimore on UStream, debating for myself the prospect of driving to Baltimore for a night.  I chickened out that time, but I refuse to here on out. Also, next week marks the release of the third issue of Interventions eMagazine.  This one is tailored towards you: the field provider.  I’ve seen the first version, and Justin Schorr has done a great job with the layouts.  The entire team at the First Responders Network is very excited about this one. Watch over the next week on Twitter and here on the blog for updates, and more importantly, if you are going to be in Baltimore, please let me know!  I’m always looking to meet new people. Share...

Street Survival the EMS1 Way

Anyone who knows me or spends any time perusing this blog knows that I feel that scene safety and the wellbeing of those of us who work in this field is the most important thing there is.  As a supervisor, my first goal is to make sure every single one of my employees goes home to their families at the end of the day.  They might not go home on time all the time, but I need to make sure that they go home. This past week I had a chance to attend the EMS1 Street Survival seminar put on by EMS1 and Calibre Press.  The program itself was created from the principles developed as part of their law enforcement scene safety class.  Much to my excitement, the class was taught by Mike Taigman, someone who I have a great deal of respect for. Prior to the class, Mike conducted an online survey that revealed that a quarter of EMTs responding had been involved in a fight or violent altercation with a patient.  75%, however, reported that as a result of those violent altercations they were injured in some way.  These numbers are unacceptable, and the need for training and education is evident.  The focus on the class was not to teach a “rip ’em up, tear ’em up” fight with everyone mentality.  While physical resolution of a conflict was covered, first and foremost, avoiding such a conflict was the priority. Day one dealt with coordinating these scenes and acting as the eyes and ears while someone else makes patient contact.  The focus was awareness: be aware of who is there, be aware of how you got in to the scene (out doors or in doors) and being aware of how to get out of a scene.  The videos and photos, actually and staged, that were shared during this first day were geared towards being focused on those little details that one might encounter.  How would you approach a certain scene?  What windows need to be watched?  How should you enter a house to best appraise what sort of situation you are walking into. When it comes to verbal communication in an escalating situation,...

EMS Expo Eve 2011

My secod EMS Expo Eve is in the books and boy was it a fun one. Hurricane Irene pushed my flight back a day and I did not get into town until almost a full day later than I had initially planned.  For those of you who are wondering, my area did not get hit very bad, but to the north of us there was a considerable amount if flooding. After getting settled in, and a great dinner at Margaritaville complete with one of their staff sliding down off of a volcano and into a blender, it was off to the Hard Rock Cafe on the strip.  Zoll was once again our gracious host and thanks to Charlotte and her team, we all had a great time.  Zoll secured the third floor of the Cafe (yes the whole thing) complete with an outdoor seating area full bar, and appetizers. What started a year ago with eight friends getting together at the House of Blues in Dallas had now grown to a group of close to one hundred conference attendees and social media gurus.  It provided a great chance for all of us to make some new friends and, for those of us who have not seen each other since EMS Today in March, it gave us an opportunity to catch up with some old friends. If you have never been to Las Vegas, you should know that it is a city that never sleeps, and last night was no exception.  Some of us got to bed at two or three AM, and others did not get to sleep at all.  Today being the first true day of EMS Expo though meant that many of us had to be up early to help set up booths, make classes, and nurse our hangovers. The time since I drove out of Baltimore back in March has seemed to fly by. Some people like Justin, Natalie, and Random, I’ve talked to quite a bit over the last couple of months, and others I have not seen since we parted ways at the Pratt Street Ale House some six months ago.  Regardless, there never seems to be enough time...

EMS Today Eve!

Well, night number 1 is in the books, and it wasn’t really a night, it was more of a full day. I was up early today, and on the road at 8am.I picked up my copilot, Patrick, and we were on our way toBaltimore.It was bitter sweet, it was the first time I traveled without a certain special someone, but she’s moved on from my life, and I’m doing the same. Five and a half hours later, we were in Baltimoreand checked into the Days Inn down at the InnerHarbor.We met up with a few Twitter friends for a late lunch, and then it was back to the Hotel to get dressed and ready for the EMS 10 Awards dinner at the M & T Bank Stadium. The EMS 10 Awards was created to recognize ten innovative EMS professionals whose “efforts are an inspiration and a challenge to the rest of theEMScommunity.”I was invited to the dinner as a representative of the Blogging and Social Media community.The more I thought about this, the more I was humbled that I was thought of as someone who was influential enough to be a guest at such an event.I haven’t been at this blogging thing very long, and it makes me happy to know that people are taking notice and enjoying what they read. This was an excellent way to start off the night.Physio Control put on a great event.The accomplishments of those selected for the awards were inspiring, and as RJ Stine commented, “who knows?Any one of us could be up there in the coming years.”A special congratulation goes out to two members of our Social Media community: Greg Friese and Chris Montera who were award recipients this year.We are making waves, and people starting to sit up and listen! From there, we headed over to the Pratt St Ale House for the Zoll sponsored Meetup to kickoff EMS Today. If you’ve been watching the Twitter Feed at all over the last week or so, chances are you saw the #PrattStTweetup hashtag scroll by. The turn out was great.It was tough to get a true head count, but we took over the entire second floor of...

Conference Preparedness

This past September, I attended my first “real” EMS Conference. Sure, I’ve been to a few small ones out in my side of Massachusetts, but I had never seen anything quite like what I experienced down in Dallas. It was amazing, and I was completely overwhelmed. Now, as I prepare to head off to Baltimore for EMS Today in just a couple of weeks, I think its time to share with you some of the lessons I learned at EMS Expo. 1. Wear comfortable shoes! – You are going to be on your feet and walking around a lot. A large conference isn’t the place for flip flops (I’m looking at you, April) or brand new shoes that haven’t been broken in yet. I was able to find some inserts down there that they were selling on the conference floor that made a huge difference, but I definitely wasn’t prepared for all of the walking that I had to do. 2. Carry a spare wall charger for your phone — I’m a social media addict. There were many times where I was chomping at the bit to get my phone charged, but my charger, of course, was on my desk in my hotel room. It would have been great if I had a wall charger with me that I could have plugged into an outlet somewhere to just get myself a little more juice. 3. Get a business card made up — You never know who you’re going to meet when you go to a conference, and having some way to identify yourself, and making a lasting impression after the fact is great. Conferences aren’t just about education, they’re also terrific networking opportunities. Not only did I make and strengthen some great friendships in Dallas, I met some people who have been valuable resources for helping to improve the place I work in. 4. Pack a couple of resumes — As I said, conferences aren’t just about education. You’re going to find services and recruiters there too. If you see someone you like, tossing a resume their way might not be a bad idea. You never know where it might take you. 5. Leave...

EMS Today Meetup

Are you going to be in Baltimore on Wednesday March 2nd? Are you looking to meet up with folks from the EMS Social Media community? Do you like beer? Well, here’s your first chance. Russell Stine from Hybridmedic and I are putting together a Meetup which will be starting at the Pratt St Ale House across the street from the Convention Center at 206 West Pratt St. There is also a very good chance that we might have a sponsor for this event, but I don’t want to attach anyone’s name to it. We should be starting up at around 7:30 or 8pm after the first round of classes is out. It will be a very informal, fun way to meet other f0lks in the community, and if its anything like the EMS Expo Meetup at the House of Blues in Dallas, it will prove to be a great time. EMS Today is just two weeks away! Are you ready? I am. Share...

Breakfast with Skip (Part 2)

That morning in Dallas, I got to spend about two hours with Chief Skip Kirkwood from Wake County EMS, and boy did it fly by. The interview I posted in that previous post was a pretty good summary of what we covered in the more “formal” part of our talk. From there, the discussion turned to an exchange of ideas and thoughts on where we are at and where we are headed, and if you’re looking for inspiration, look no further than what you can learn from him, and his department in North Carolina. My admiration for Skip Kirkwood started about five years ago. I learned about the National EMS Management Association, and their list serv on Google, and I quickly signed up for both. If you don’t follow the NEMSMA List Serv, what are you waiting for? Its filled with some of the greatest minds in EMS who frequently share ideas and thoughts on the field, and Skip is one of their most frequent and well respected contributors. When he speaks (or in this case writes) people stop, take notice, and listen. I have actually saved many of his emails that I found to be useful, and I’ve shared them with those around me. I’ve closely followed the progress Wake County EMS has made over the years, and I even have a few friends from New Jersey who currently work in his system (who I am very jealous of). To me, Skip Kirkwood comes across as someone who is a fearless, confident leader who expects nothing but the best out of everyone around him, and I don’t see why simply his personality wouldn’t bring that out of people. He also projects himself as a very patient person, eager to share the life and professional lessons he’s gained over the years. I thought the most interesting moment in our interview was his response to the question “What lesson would you like to teach to a new EMT or Paramedic just getting their start in the field?” His response had nothing to do with anything clinical or even operational. It was about their personal well being. “Manage your finances,” he said, “don’t live outside of...