Proper Safety While Saving Others

emtWorking in the medical field (particularly for EMTs) presents all sorts of personal risks. You will, of course, be dealing with sick people and there is always the risk of catching whatever virus they may have, but the risks go further than just that. There are other hidden dangers lurking in the field and it is important to know what they are and how to protect yourself from them.

Starting with the obvious is infection. Both airborne and fluid transmission are present. So you’ll need to take care to wear proper gloves and masks to prevent yourself from getting anything from your patients. When you first see your patient, do a quick visual assessment of the person and see if they are bleeding, are there other bodily fluids or secretions present, or anything of that nature so that you can bear it in mind while working.

Another important point to cover is that of transporting your patients. Often times, they are in no shape to walk and need to be carried. And there are numerous situations in which you may have to transport them. This is where having the proper equipment is vital. For example, having a weight belt may come in useful if your patient is very obese. A stair chair is essential for moving victims safely down flights of steps. Stretchers and gurneys all have their proper place and you must know how to use them properly.

Finally, there is the matter of getting injured by the patient themselves. They may be in a state of confusion or fear and may not be totally aware of what is happening around them. As such, they may resist and even fight those trying to assist them. Having a partner and a way of safely restraining and possibly even sedating them is also something that must be known and practiced for the good of both the patient and yourself included.