Rudeness from EMTs and Paramedics

  1. Are there any LTC nurses out there who have experienced condescending attitudes or blatant rudeness from EMTs and paramedics during the process of sending residents out to the hospital? I simply want to become reassured in the knowledge that I'm not the only LTC nurse out there who has sensed this phenomenon. Thanks in advance.
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  2. 129 Comments

  3. by   JohnBearPA
    I've had one set of emt's be very rude concerning a p/u to go to hosp for eval. The one woman asked why she was going, and when told her lab values prompted her MD to send her out, demanded to look at the labs. Stupidly, I showed her, and she said "hmmmmph, these ain 't that bad, I wouldn't waste the amb time to send her out" at which I couldn't take another moment of this, and replied "well Darlin', when you have the power to decide who goes for eval, no problem, until then, move your butt and get her to the hosp because both her MD and I want her to get checked out, and we both outrank you hon." She was part of a volunteer ambulance org, and wasn't even an EMT, but studying to be one and driving in the meantime.
    Second time it happened was when another nursed called for transport to hosp on a DNR pt, who was having trouble breathing. He coded while they were moving him, and they began CPR even when I shoved the yellow DNR form in front of his face. They continued, and the MD chewed MY ass out for the CPR.
    Some of these people thing they know everything, and believe me, they don't. Some of them know more than we do, but know how to act and not be obnoxious. Guess I just haven't met many of the latter.
  4. by   sleepyndopey
    Oh Boy! You just hit on my major pet peeve. I can't stand when these EMTs or paramedics come in with their attitudes. There are a few who are nice but most of them are condescending and RUDE.
    A few weeks ago EMTs came to my units nursing station and said they were there to pick up a pt in room 116. We were not sending anyone out so we called the 2nd floor(ltc) and they took about 30 secs to answere the phone and then said "yes, were sending out pt in 216". So the EMTs walk away from the dest toward the elevator talking their trash ie, "everytime we come to this place no one knows what their doing" Hello! it was a busy day! So sorry for the major trouble we just caused you sensitive selves!
    The paramedics are much worse. They always treat us like morons. I asked my husband(who is an rn but used to be a paramedic) What is the deal with these attitudes? Why are so many of them like that? He said their pay isn't that great and they have delusions of grandeur.
    Anyway, I am always elected to deal with them when they come on our floor. My coworkers tell me I'm intimidating:spin:.
  5. by   facetiousgoddess
    Lets see in the last month in order of the most outrageous:

    1. Hipchecked out of the way while performing CPR
    2. Told my resident would be back by 6am (as in I don't know what I am doing) Resident admitted to ICU with PE.
    3. Again resident will be back in an hour (see above) Resident admitted to ICU with AAA.
    4. Resident had a fall, EMT's saw no reason to send. Resident transferred from our local hospital to level 1 trauma center with subarachnoid bleed.

    I could go on except I am just getting annoyed!!!!! It started with the EMT's when I started working at the "worst" facility in the county. So many assumptions that both our residents and our staff are disposable......

    Though in our other township, fabulous EMTs. Who knew 5 miles could make such a difference.



    Have left bad facility, EMTs part of reason and am starting at an ALF tomorrow.

    Take Care
    Tres:spin:
  6. by   Simplepleasures
    Oh YES!:angryfire
  7. by   txspadequeenRN
    dont even get me started on this..once i do this thread will shut down.
  8. by   TheCommuter
    Here's my two cents on this issue. People should not automatically conclude that all LTC nurses are stupid, neglectful, incapable of assessment, lacking judgment, or purposely did something to harm the resident. I even had one paramedic shout, "So, what did you guys do to the patient this time around?"

    When I send patients out, they typically remain at the hospital for three days (or more) as the result of an acute, emergent condition. Yet, some cocky EMT or paramedic predicted that they'd return to the nursing home by the end of the day.

    I respect EMTs and paramedics for their knowledge base and skills. However, I believe that they should respect the fact that LTC nurses possess a fund of knowledge and skills that are beneficial to our fragile, elderly residents.
  9. by   GilaRRT
    This seems to be a topic I see on the EMS forums quite frequently, only the posts are negative toward LTC facilities and nursing homes. I think you have bad apples on both sides of the coin that feed into the cliches.
  10. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from GilaRN
    This seems to be a topic I see on the EMS forums quite frequently, only the posts are negative toward LTC facilities and nursing homes. I think you have bad apples on both sides of the coin that feed into the cliches.
    True. I'll reiterate that this thread is not intended to be mean-spirited or negative toward EMTs or paramedics. After all, they are the front-line healthcare workers regarding emergent conditions. They often see day-to-day emergencies unfold before they reach the ER and, therefore, swiftly intervene to save lives.

    I'll also state that not all EMTs and paramedics are rude, and that many are very professional in their behavior, conduct, and practice.

    However, I'm now keen to the fact that other LTC nurses have experienced the coldness and callousness from some of these individuals. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen.
  11. by   flightnurse2b
    it definately can go both ways. i am not defending either or, im just playing both sides of the fence.

    i am a paramedic, and also a nursing student who happens to be doing clinicals in a nursing home at this moment. the thing ive noticed, is when a patient needs to be sent out, before the EMTs even get there, the nurses are talking about how much they "hate EMTS because they dont know what they are doing and are cocky", and when the EMTs get there, they have a chip on their shoulder kinda like "oh god not this place again. these nurses are dumb."

    i truly do respect nurses who work in LTC, god bless you all, because i dont know how you do it. it is incredibly difficult work.

    honestly, my experience while working in the field with nursing home pts has not all been good. i dont relate it to the nursing staff, but the lack of nursing staff. the nurses and aides are so overwhelmed with so many patients and so many things going on that when we would arrive it was difficult to find anyone to explain what was going on because nurses always had to run and scoop someone off the floor, fumble through medical records to find labs, get nana off the potty, etc etc, and EMS wants to go, go, go. the one thing i know that would upset me (and i admit i am impatient) is when i wanted information and the primary nurse was no where to be found to give it to me.

    i have learned alot from being in clinical at the nursing home, and i now see how incredibly stressful and busy the job of an LTC nurse is.i have responded to many calls at LTC that were organized and the nurses were very helpful and the patient was transported quickly. i have responded to calls where we have saved lives together.

    but, i have also responded to many calls where as soon as we arrived, eyes were rolled at us and orders barked. i have picked up patients who have been dead on the floor for hours, and no one knows what happened. i have picked up patients that have DNR/DNI/DNH orders, and if we refuse to take them, we are the bad guys for not wanting to get charged with assault and battery.

    i think something ive learned from being on the other side, and spending clinical time in a nursing home is that we as EMS dont know the facilities protocols, and vice versa. recently, a patient at my nursing home coded, and CPR was not initiated because the patient was a DNR per their facility. when EMS arrived, they did not have a copy of the state DNR, only the facility DNR, and EMS is obligated to perform CPR until a copy is produced. ugly words were exchanged and heads were butted. i pulled the ADON to the side, and once i explained this to her, she calmed down and the patient was transported and pronounced at the hospital ER. she also told me that she doesnt hates paramedics... she just doesnt understand why we do the things we do.

    i know there are definately impatient and nasty paramedics. but there are also not so friendly nurses. im not trying to upset anyone, just seen it from both sides, and it definately goes both ways.... just two totally different worlds colliding.
    Last edit by flightnurse2b on Dec 18, '07
  12. by   txspadequeenRN
    my thing here is i know my patient and if i say they need to go out then take them without arguing with me. trust me when i tell you i sure ain't sending them out just to do the mountains of paper work that comes with a transfer , the numerous telephone calls i will have to make or to deal with the ems that want to question my judgment. :smiley_ab
  13. by   flightnurse2b
    Quote from txspadequeen921
    my thing here is i know my patient and if i say they need to go out then take them without arguing with me. trust me when i tell you i sure ain't sending them out just to do the mountains of paper work that comes with a transfer , the numerous telephone calls i will have to make or to deal with the ems that want to question my judgment. :smiley_ab
    please dont take my post that way. just explaining it from a paramedics point of view who has now seen it from the ltc side. im not trying to justify any emt treating a nurse poorly, i think the problem is two very different fields of expertise with very, very different protocols in a hectic situation. im not trying to sword fight with you
  14. by   leeae85
    That's the way I feel, I work the same hall every time I work, half of my patients have been there the whole time i have (15 months) so if i see a total change in their behavior, wether or not vitals are off, and the on call md says send them, I send them. Then a couple of cocky jerks show up and look at me like i have 2 heads! i sent one little lady out because she was calm and quiet, and her baseline was kicking and screaming. she wasn't complaining of anything, but just seemed off. EMT shows up, GRILLS me up and down. turns out, she was almost uroseptic! i dont know everything, but i know my residents!

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