Left sided heart failure, right sided, congestive heart failure, advanced heart failure, systolic, diastolic… and don’t forget what the kidneys do to make things worse! Whew! No wonder heart failure can be a dreaded topic for EMS. However, we’re offering a CE to help clarify the confusion and dig deep into the what’s and why’s of the heart failure patient, their medications, and how we can optimize their care in the prehospital setting. Click on the “more” link below to expand the page and find the link for the educational material.
There are many causes for altered mental status and just as many causes of seizures… some related, some not. This CE explores both and goes in depth in the role of the GABA and glutamate receptors. They are not only the major receptors involved in regulating neural activity, but we target GABA receptors with our prehospital medications. The education also takes a look at the common benzodiazepines used to control most seizures, and why delays to treatment can cause harm. Click on the “more” link below to access the educational pdf and more.
Fentanyl and morphine… the meat n’ potatoes of a paramedic’s analgesia toolbox. But, how well do you understand how these drugs work in the body? Why does fentanyl kick in quicker, but doesn’t last as long as morphine? How do you manage unusual situations, such as a patient with cancer taking more milligrams of morphine each day than you carry in the box? Can you help her through the breakthrough pain? And what’s this methadone stuff? Click on the “more” link below to find the link to the pdf education, learn, and earn some CE in the process — hint: NREMT recerts using the 2016 curricula… you need the Toxicological Emergencies credit, don’t ya?
An ambulance crash should be on no one’s bucket list, but they still happen far too often in our profession. This education explores the facts, the “8 minute response” rule, and what we can do to prevent the unnecessary injury and death. The CE can be used towards your NREMT Operations: Ambulance Safety core needs. Although it takes a peek at UMC EMS’ policies on ambulance safety, keep in your own agency’s policies and culture of safety in the back of your mind. Your ideas can prevent the next injury or death. Click on the “more” link below to find the education link and other important information.
Rules. If you wanna play the game, you gotta know the rules. It’s no different whether you’re a physician, nurse, or EMT at any certification level.
And Texas wants to be sure we know the rules of our profession. Starting September 1, 2017, all certified EMTs at all levels of certification will need to complete an approved jurisprudence exam continuing education course before they can recertify. Guess where you can find one of those courses? 🙂
Transporting kiddos in the ambulance – really, how hard can it be? Just have mom hold the little one as you bounce down the road and… CRASH!!! Mothers are strong people, but even they can’t prevent their baby from flying out of their arms.
When we’re entrusted to take care of our patients and non-patient riders, there are no shortcuts. We must assure their safety. The Safe Pediatric Transport CE examines several elements of infant and child transport, the federal recommendations that apply to ambulances, and the different ways we can transport these young patients without causing harm.
This education is a mix of a pdf and an online video that offers half an hour of continuing education credit. If you’re looking for a boring, totally-serious CE, it’s not here. Action shots provided by our backwoods Senior Field Training Officer Donnie and his sidekick Field Training Officer, Les.
Germs. Everyone has them, but there’s no need to share ’em.
This education explores the different routes of pathogen transmission and the vaccinations we receive to protect ourselves and our patients. The CE then takes a look at SIRS and sepsis along with the prehospital treatment for those patients.
Is it measles or chickenpox? Is that sign on the door that reads, “Airborne Precautions” really that big of a deal? Grab the CE, some hand sanitizer, and find out!
All bleeding stops eventually. One of our goals though is to stop the bleeding earlier rather than later. This Trauma Tourniquets CE covers one area of severe hemorrhage control: Arterial bleeding from an extremity.
We’ll explore the history of tourniquets, types, indications, contraindications, and even the myths in this video/hybrid CE.
Mmmmmm. Cocoa Puffs! Did you know that the cacao extract in this popular breakfast cereal has some sort of effect on cancer and surgery? Nor did we. But the fraudulent journals thought it did… 17 of them to be exact. Or how about the EMS staple: The rigid, long spineboard? How did it become the protector of our fragile spine decades ago, and now is all but completely banished in the more progressive EMS systems?
EMS has progressed a lot in the last few years, stepping up from “ambulance attendants” to finally receiving recognition as medical professionals where earned. Prehospital research played a major role in this transformation from ambulance drivers to practitioners. But with the ease in finding information right at our fingertips (literally), it’s important for all EMTs and paramedics to understand the different types of studies out there that can influence protocol development and even the politics influencing prehospital practices.
Winter. Time for snow, cold winds, and house fires? It makes sense… high-demand space heaters plugged into questionable electrical sources, fireplaces left unattended, and other ways to get through the freezing weather. Unless of course you live in south Texas — we envy you a bit over here in the northwestern part of the state for that.
No matter what the cause, we need to treat our thermal, chemical, inhalation, and electrical burn patients appropriately to give them the best chance at quality life and productivity. While death from burn injuries is nowhere near the numbers affected by stroke, heart attacks, and even falls, it can lead to lifelong disability if not treated appropriately by the earliest healthcare providers: Us.
This education follows the principles and guidelines offered in the American Burn Association’s™ Advanced Burn Life Support with some modifications made for our prehospital needs. Please note that it is not a replacement for the full ABLS class.
If you’re looking for that elusive Affective Characteristics education for your NREMT NCCP recertification, look no further!
Professionalism and cultural competency in EMS can be challenging. While we cherish memories of those kind-hearted patients who really filled our sense of purpose, we also face the darker side of the spectrum: We’re spit at, bit, insulted, and sometimes treated no better than a pile of hot steamy canine excrement.
We shrug off much of it, but sometimes those bad encounters keep creeping into our own subconscious little by little. Yet, our EMS profession requires the highest level of trust, compassion, and competency. This education was developed to remind us of our professional obligations and to see other cultures and people in a more open light.
We hope you don’t see the education as yet another NREMT National Continued Competency or Texas state Preparatory CE slot to fill, but something that can hopefully benefit someone you know in the future.
It’s just you, your partner, one ambulance, and a dozen or more patients screaming for help. One is demanding immediate transport for his injured arm, another is in your face panicking about his car, and someone else is quiet… too quiet and barely breathing. This is an MCI, and now you have to basically herd cats. Or worse, figure out the complexities of the latest triage tag design.
Acute pain is one of the most common reasons why EMS is called, but can also be one of the more controversial topics to tackle for prehospital medicine.
Can neonates feel pain? How do I assess pain in screaming, crying children? What can I safely give pregnant patients? How do all of the different pain medications work anyway?
This July 2016 Case Review covers the assessment of pain, how the various analgesics target certain areas of the body, non-pharmaceutical options, and reviews pain management for a couple of traumatic injury cases. Even though UMC EMS has ibuprofen, acetaminophen, ketorolac, opioids, and ketamine at their disposal, you should still find this education to be light on the protocol-specific information and applicable to most area EMS.
Children and water… a great way to ease the summer sizzle, but another way for kids to find trouble! Our actions on scene and our prehospital medical care can make a huge difference in the child’s outcome and future neurological development.
This continuing education focuses on prehospital BLS and ALS treatment of the pediatric aquatic distress and drowning victim, covering a wide variety of topics ranging from basic first responder rescue to advanced resuscitation.
The kidneys… superheros in their own right. Why should the brain and heart get all the credit when these mega-filters detoxify the blood, remove excess fluid, produce hormones, regulate pH, and so much more?
And then there’s the patients with chronic kidney disease who can’t reap these benefits and instead, resort to dialysis to keep them alive. This population keeps growing year after year, and EMS needs to understand the pathophysiology behind the condition and appropriate treatments in the field.
The “heart pump” population grows every year. And usually, it’s the left ventricular that requires assistance from the pump, so we see more patients with an LVAD (left ventricular assist device) every year. Taking care of patients with any ventricular assist device (VAD) is such a big concern that even the NREMT now requires at least half an hour of education specifically towards this life-saving technology. What we do in the prehospital setting can help or harm these patients.
However, LVADs are nothing to fear *if* you know how to assess these patients, use appropriate treatments, and avoid ones that could cause harm. Why not just defer these decisions to the “doc” instead? Truth is, not many physicians are familiar with VADs either! You have a golden opportunity to become the patient’s true advocate through this video case review education.
To “stem the tide” is a nautical term where the ship is turn headlong into a surging tide or wave, which could otherwise tip a vessel if hit broadside.
Intubation, and specifically pharmaceutically-assisted intubation, is one of the most critical skills performed by a paramedic. You are betting the ship, or better yet, your patient’s life that you can get the job done correctly, efficiently, and with no harm done to the patient. This narrated slideshow education teaches you how to successfully face this tide head-on by optimizing patient positioning, making educated decisions on medication choice, and the best techniques for the actual intubation process.
Kids bounce, right?
This seems to be the case most of the time. But when faced with a seriously-injured pediatric patient, we owe it to the child, the parents, and ourselves to understand the anatomical differences between children and adults, the different types of injury, and best prehospital management practices.
In addition, we care for children at two different ends of a spectrum: The dearly-loved special needs children at one end, and at-risk pediatrics who may have been physically abused on the other. Both deserve specialized care and management for their safety and well-being.
As both technology and our geriatric population grows, paramedics are now treating more patients with internal pacemaker/internal cardiac defibrillators (ICDs) than ever before. But, how much do we actually *know* about these lifesaving devices?
Can we dig deeper into the ECG and instead of thinking, “Oh *!%$*! pacemaker spikes!” actually know what’s going on with our patient? Absolutely.
Oxygenation and ventilation are cornerstones to your patient’s care. We already know that we want pulse oximetry to remain at 94% or better, and capnography should sit between 35 to 45 mmHg. But do we REALLY know what we’re looking at, and how can we use our tools to the best advantage? (more…)