Reflections on the Holiday Season

EMS and the Law

 

 
 
 

W. Ann "Winnie" Maggiore, JD, NREMT-P | | Thursday, December 13, 2007


As usual, I approach the holiday season with much trepidation. I've had the fun of doing CPR under a Christmas tree, and of responding to horrifying New Year's Eve trauma. For most EMS responders, the holidays will have times when we can be with family, and other times when we must fulfill our duty to work a shift and take care of sick people. There will be tragedies over the holiday season; there always are. Losses seem greater at this time of year. This year my thoughts have turned once again to being thankful for what we have.

I got a Christmas list from my 9-year-old nephew that said "Pokemon cards or just give my Christmas present to some poor kid." It warmed my heart to see a child growing up aware that acquiring increasingly more material possessions isn't what life is all about. I don't need any more things, or want any more things at this point in my life. Having friends and family share my dinner table is all the gift I need.

Ten years ago, my husband had a near-death experience that put him on a ventilator for six weeks and left him with brain damage, ending his career as an emergency physician. I still enjoy waking up in the morning and listening to him breathe, thinking how wonderful it is that he is able to do so. Not a day passes when I am not thankful to have him here with me. Then I go outside and see the sun coming up over the mountains and mesas, and again think about how fortunate I am just to have the view.

In EMS we will see sorrow and tragedy over the holiday season. Somehow, the emotional side of our practice is magnified. The losses seem more severe because the season is supposed to be filled with joy. We will see some of those joyful times turned into pain and misery by illness and injury. Over the holiday season, we must remain strong, help those who need our assistance, and perform our duties with a special sense of gratefulness for what we have.

The ability to do what we do in EMS is a gift in itself. So few people have jobs they find fulfilling -- we're fortunate our profession places us in a position to help people in their time of need. Look for a child's smile or a touch on the shoulder from an elder, and find in that the satisfaction we can achieve in EMS. Shed a tear for the loss of a loved one, make a difference for a patient on your next shift and come home safe and warm to your family.

Happy Holidays!




Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics:

 
Author Thumb

W. Ann "Winnie" Maggiore, JD, NREMT-PWinnie Maggiore is an attorney and paramedic in Albuquerque. She is a shareholder at the law firm of Butt, Thornton & Baehr, PC where she defends physicians, dentists, oral surgeons, nurses, paramedics and other health care providers, as well as law enforcement officers, against lawsuits and administrative enforcement actions. She is an author of many EMS legal publications, a member of the JEMS editorial board, and holds a volunteer faculty position in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of New Mexico.

BROWSE FULL BIO & ARTICLES >

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Mechanical CPR is Producing Resuscitation Results Beyond Expectations

Discover why clinical studies are finding mechanical CPR just as effective as optimally-performed CPR.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

New Technology Helps Missouri Ambulances

Strategic GPS tracking helps in Springfield.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Profile: Hospital Wing Air Ambulance

Take a look inside this Memphis service.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

New Monitors for Wyoming EMS

Grant helps Torrington EMS get new equipment.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

London Medics Increasingly Attacked

One medic describes her violent confrontation.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Violence, Arson in Ferguson

Crowds in Ferguson and elsewhere react to decision.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

California Bus Rollover

One killed and dozens injured.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Buffalo Residents Dig Out and Prepare for Flooding

Flooding expected as heavy snow melts.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >