“I’m going to be a little bit different than what you are used to hearing at these conferences …” is how Andrew Ecker, BS, RN, CEN, MICP, began his session Spinal Cord Injury Assessment and Care from One of Our Own on Saturday, Feb. 27 at EMS Today 2016.
From this point, Ecker went on to challenge each attendee to be better leaving the room than when they came in, both personally and professionally. The topic of the lecture was spinal cord injuries, and it seemed like just any other informative lecture at first glance: heavy into the complicated anatomy and physiology, current and past treatments, and the impact of prehospital care. He emphasized learning the complicated pieces, but made the material easy to grasp for providers across multiple levels. He also challenged providers to remain progressive and up to date as this is a ‘hot topic’ right now for emergency care and up for much debate in practice.
Ecker recognized that this type of material can be dry, and said he hoped to accomplish so much more in his time with the class than just covering spinal cord injuries.
He told the attendees, “Before I leave here today, I want you all to understand that you matter more than you know. You are a powerful, influential force on the people you take care of every day. So if there is nothing else that you take from here, please take that with you.”
Ecker discussed his own experiences as a young man with a severe spinal cord injury, working his way from being labeled as “never able to walk again” to where he is now. He made sure to connect individually with as many in attendance as possible, and challenged everyone in the room to push through their personal struggles and realize that their greatest gift is their impact on the people around them.
For more coverage of EMS Today 2016, click here.