Perseverance, or more simply stated, Grit, is a common trait amongst EMS providers. It grants us the ability to endure in the face of hardship when others may consider quitting or failing. In regards to COVID 19, we are all playing the long game, it is a marathon (unfortunately) rather than a sprint. We must stay united as a group and stay true to our mission of supporting and protecting our communities despite the pandemic. That is not to say that we are not human ourselves. While perseverance is one of the characteristics I value most in EMS providers, another virtue I’d care to juxtapose it to is vulnerability. In any situation that presents a threat — be it physical or emotional — our natural instinct is to protect ourselves. That's just basic survival. We try to defend, hide or deny our own insecurities and weaknesses. Being vulnerable involves letting yourself feel all things — the good, the bad and the not-so-pretty — and then also letting someone else see it all. Trying to be invulnerable can be exhausting, as much as we’d like to be super heroes protecting the population from medical maladies we must also acknowledge our own humanity. This is not easy and it’s okay to express that and seek support. When we numb feelings like fear, embarrassment and pain, we also numb excitement, hope, gratitude and happiness. Allowing vulnerability into our lives can rejuvenate our senses and actually foster, build and restore our community and make us more connected. I’m including the link to Brene Brown’s TED talk on vulnerability that has nearly 50 million views. Thank you all again for always being in service and a very happy EMS Week.
Today’s episode brings us 2 EMS physicians from Stanford on the topic, “Where have all the STEMIs gone?” where we dive into the literature and statistics on cardiac arrest, dying at home, emergency department volume and numerous other items related to COVID19. Interestingly both domestically and abroad there has been a dramatic reduction in heart attacks, strokes and traumas that have been presenting via EMS to the ED. We discuss potential hypotheses into this phenomenon and also explore other salient details related to COVID.
Bryan David Sloane, MD – Is the current EMS fellow at Stanford University. He did his residency at Harbor UCLA where he lived out his EMERGENCY! Dreams. He was an EMT in LA for 6 years before medical school and considers himself an EMT first and a physician second. He hopes to take an attending position at Kaiser South Sacramento where he will also be working on many local EMS initiatives.
Gregory H. Gilbert, MD - Clinical associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at Stanford University. Medical Director of San Mateo County and EMS Fellowship Director at Stanford University. He grew up in New York State and received his MD, from SUNY Downstate with distinction for investigative scholarship. He completed his emergency medicine training in Atlanta, Georgia at Emory University and is dual boarded in EM and EMS.
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Wishing everyone a safe tour and a "happy" EMS Week!