Posts Tagged ‘st andrews ambulance’


July 29th, 2008 No comments

So recently I’ve been contemplating whether starting my own St Andrew’s Section in the West End would be a good idea or not.

According to the regulations I only need 4 members to start a “Section”. This would be attached to a Company (would I have a say in which one? no idea) and if I achieved 12 members after it year it could become a Company itself. Honestly, I don’t see 4 members being a problem. With some decent effort I don’t even think 12 would be a problem. The problem comes when I try and think about the logistics involved.

  • To hold meetings I’d need some sort of hall. This would involve money, probably around 100 a month.
  • To train I’d need equipment. Equipment costs money. Storage is also a problem
  • New members would need to undergo a full course before being allowed on duty. This cost me 60 to go through (probably not the best deal in the world). Could I pass on some of this onto the applicants?
  • Income probably wouldn’t happen until a number of members were able to go on regular duties.
  • Uniform costs.
  • The time and effort involved, combined with me going into 3rd year, might burn me out.

On the other hand, there are a number of pros:

  • I wouldn’t be annoyed at my current situation any longer
  • I would be leaving a, hopefully successful, Uni society behind when I left. That’s pretty cool as well as looking good on my CV.
  • I might be able to expand upon the training normally provided.
  • There would be a much more social aspect, great for everyone meeting other people, etc.

I’m still not too sure. Theoretically it would be comparable to the LINKS aspect of St John’s ambulance which seems to work well.

At the moment I’m going to wait until I start back again. This way I’d be able to see how much time I’ll have and how much I can get annoyed about my current company.

T in the Park

July 10th, 2008 1 comment

T in the Park 2008 begins tomorrow evening in Balado. I will be joining festivities early on Saturday morning where I will be part of the first aid team onsite. I’m covering the hours of 10am-6pm on both the Saturday and the Sunday. Honestly, I can’t wait.

The atmosphere will be terrific, the bands will be awesome (any bets on whether Amy Winehouse will turn up?) and the first aid requirements are likely to be greater than any I’ve experienced. Because of that, I’m not quite sure the best way to prepare. At the moment it looks like I’ll be a foot patrol on the site which means the majority of cases I can probably send/escort to a first aid post. I do imagine I’ll be rotating around throughout the day.

Ideally I’d like a few (not too many!) cases where I might need to rack my head to think of how to deal with it. Interestingly we have a number of St John’s members from down south (particularly Leeds) who are coming up, a few on my shifts and possibly as my partner. This would be quite good, I’d love to hear about the differences between us. On the other hand if they wear the green uniform everyone is going to treat them like ambulance staff. Should be interesting!

I’d planned to do some live-twittering but we’ve been told phones should be off whilst on duty. I might manage to slip a few in during my breaks and in the evenings.

All in all, I hope the weather stays nice and that I don’t loose anything I need. Hopefully I’ll be enjoy myself!

In other news, I have 1 week remaining of teenage years. Ahhh! May be getting an iPhone for my birthday though!


January 19th, 2008 No comments

I seem to have failed already to try and keep this a little more updated. Oh well, lets see what I can remember.

I got back to Uni with my rather shiny bike in tow. It’s not quite as shiny any longer but still pretty useful. Every time I use it and go up an even moderately steep hill I realise just how unfit I am. I’ve also not been running yet this year, which I’m sure can be classed as a failure. The weather’s been pretty terribly, if I can use that as an excuse.

The actual course itself is coming along nicely. Not too fond of my new PBL group – it’s by far the quietest one I’ve ever had. It contains a couple resitting and another with many years of higher education behind them. The plus side is that it’s quite a focused group (when we speak) and we get the PBL done to the letter with time to spare. Another plus side is that I’m only with them for 5 weeks, which since I’ve taken so long to post this gives me another 3.

So in no time at all I’ll be doing my first SSM. This is possibly the most exciting thing on the course this year and I’m really looking forward to it. I have two opposing views of what it might consist of. The negative one being a lot of science and limited, strict clinical sessions once or twice. The positive would be a few science based days with an unlimited number of supervised, educational but not too strict clinical sessions. Chances are it’ll fit somewhere in between, not quite sure where though.

I was sorely tempted by Queen’s Belfast’s Emergency Medicine Conference, which features:

  • talks on acute medicine, trauma and major incident management
  • workshops on data and imaging interpretation
  • undergraduate research & poster presentations,
  • the opportunity to gain valuable hands-on experience through the use of simulators for clinical procedures and acute medical emergency scenarios!

Sadly, it’s timetable at the end of the last week of the SSM (I think) which will probably consist of essay writing and presentation. The other downside is the lack of guaranteed accommodation and I’d have to sort out travel myself too. I’m hoping that next year I’ll be able to go though – whether it’ll be worth it then or not I don’t know.

The strangest thing happened recently – I found one of my best friends from primary school (Edinburgh, before I moved) on facebook. It gets even stranger when I found out he met someone from my school in South America! It gets just plain freaky when he replies and asks if I know one of my ex’s. (Oh dear!). We’re hopefully going to meet up in the next week or so. I don’t really know how to start filling in 10 years of non-contact. Guess we’ll just see what happens.

I’ve also found a pretty decent blog – Blog St John – which is an excellent insight into the background of St John’s Ambulance. Whilst St Andrew’s is quite different (it’s a lot smaller for a start), we seem to share common problems. I wish I could find one on the British Red Cross too, it would be nice to see which society really is falling to bits the most.

Maybe I’m being short sighted. I’ve not been in for long and I’m still getting used to how things work. Either way though, it’s not exactly a model organisation. I was tempted to start a similar blog, fully anonymous, so I could write similar stuff about St Andrews. The truth is though, I wouldn’t keep it up. Instead I’ll just have to post here my rants (one is coming soon, I’m sure) and hope that noone takes offence.

This is reasonably anonymous, but not very much so. I don’t imagine anyone who wanted to find out who was behind this blog would struggle much. I also don’t really see the need. This is perhaps best in a post of its own but very few bloggers have stuck to their pseudonym and I’m quite happy to qualify my postings if need be. Perhaps those who are intent on covering their identity consider themselves in a position where there background would cause problems of various kinds. Either way, I have very little to hide.

Goodbye 2007!

December 30th, 2007 2 comments

So it’s almost the end of another year. It also means I’ve had a blog for about 8 months. I’ve not wrote as much as I’d have liked but, looking back, I’ve done not bad. No idea who is or why anyone is reading this but I hope it’s at least vaguely interesting.

Christmas was pretty good. My brother got a Wii, which is slightly shared with me, so that dominated most of Christmas Day and a good deal of Boxing Day too. Went to the sales on the morning of Boxing Day but couldn’t find much that interested me. Still managed to spend a bit on clothes. My other vouchers will go on stuff for my bike most likely which I think I’m taking back with me to Glasgow

After Boxing Day I went back to Glasgow to do some St Andrew’s work on the Ice at George Square. I managed, somehow, to get the wrong day – I went on the 27th and wasn’t meant to be doing anything till the 28th. So I went and bought a copy of Runner’s World (in an attempt to motivate me, not sure if it’ll work) and also another paramedic blog book and went back to my (rather empty) flat.

The day later I was back on the ice proper, although the weather was terribly and we were some of the few. I met 2 British Red Cross members who were on with us and learned a lot of interesting details about the differences between StAA and BRC. It’s not really too relevant to me since, at the end of the day (hopefully), I’ll be a fully fledged doc. However for those looking to maybe go into the ambulance service, the training provided by the Red Cross is far beyond any offered by StAA and within about a year they’ll be almost training to the level of an EMT.

Some of the differences are common sense (anaphylaxis is integrated into the standard first aid), others seem to cut down the red tap – I wouldn’t have to be a member for a year to take an AED training course – and then there is the general higher training level, involving medical gases and transport to hospitals.

I’m not really in the mood to convert over – not yet anyway – but had I known any of this before joining StAA I may have been tempted the other way.

Anyway, the event itself was dead. We had only a couple simple casualties. I did, however, get asked to come back the day later. Unfortunately there was relatively little for us to do that day as well, despite the much increased number of people on the ice. I did marvel at the insistence of one mother who wasn’t having any of her son’s injured knee and made him walk home. Mother’s know best, apparently.

I could be at the castle for hogmanay, thankfully not doing any first aid. See you in 2008!

[Posted a bit late, but I did write it in 2007...]

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