So, TINS©, TIWFDASL©, when we caught a run for a “sick person”. My tales of adventure notwithstanding, the overwhelming majority of EMS runs in Da City were what the personnel called “sickies”. This tale is about one such soul.
We arrived, and things progressed in the usual fashion. Six questions, one command.
- “Who’s sick?” (show of hands).
- “What kind of sick are you?” (the response generally ran along the lines of “I’m really sick”, or “I’m just sick, that’s all!”) (so much for “History of Present Illness”)
- “How long have you been sick, Sir/Madam?” (typical response was some variation of “A good little while.”)
- “Do you want to go to the hospital?” (A surprising number of people did NOT want to go to the hospital. Some wanted to be told that they were alright, others wanted to go to some place in West Bumfuck, way, way, way outside of Da City’s service area, or wanted a ride to the doctor’s appointment that they, surprisingly, had made. We did not take folks to their doctor appointments or to BFE Community Hospital. Fire department rules.)
- “Can you walk?” (the correct answer is always, “YES!”. Occasionally “No”, but the number of trivially ill/injured folks traveling to ER via EMS was both surprising and disappointing.)
- “Where are your shoes?” (Again, a surprising number of folks who presumably had lived in Da City all their lives, and had noted snowfall and freezing ass temperatures arrive each and every winter, did not think to have their shoes staged, oh, I don’t know, NEAR THE DAMNED DOOR, once they had determined that they required ambulance transport to the hospital emergency department for their sniffles or whatnot.)
- (Command) Follow Me!”
So, one such soul, seated in the back of the ambulance with me late one night/early one morning, was being interviewed by me. I asked him his allergies. “No, none, not really.”
I asked him his medications. “Well, no, none, I guess.”
That did not sound right. I asked, again, differently. “Does you doctor think that you are taking any medication regularly?”
“I suppose so.”
“What might that medication be, that you suppose that your doctor thinks you ought to be taking?”
“Oh, some nerve pill.”
“Oh? ‘Some nerve pill?’ Why aren’t you taking your nerve pill?”
“Well, the voices in my head told me I didn’t need them any longer!”
“The voices told you that, did they?”
“Oh, yes! They were very clear about that!”
“I bet that they were!”