Welcome to Thursday isms! In these videos, Scott McConnell, RN, BSN, CEN, NRP, EMS-I, and Distance CME co-founder, discusses various maxims of the EMS profession and dolls out some EMS advice. These maxims are sometimes serious, sometimes comical. But, no matter their nature, we hope you’ll find them helpful, or at least entertaining.

In this week’s video, Soctt McConnell, RN, BSN, CEN, NRP, EMS-1 goes over a case of bariatric care from the field.

A case of bariatric care

This week, Scott told a story submitted an anonymous EMS provider. In the story, the provider told how he and his partner administered the proper care and transport to a bariatric patient.

Dispatched on a call for a 65-year-old woman complaining of shortness of breath, this provider and his partner were surprised when they reached the patient’s home. The woman was indeed 65, and was indeed experiencing shortness of breath. But, she was between 700-750 lbs.

This changed things.

The providers began administering the proper care for shortness of breath. They worked on her pulse, blood pressure, and sinus tach. Still, the woman continued to complain about shortness of breath. Clearly, this was a bariatric issue.

But, this call happened before EMS had access to specialized bariatric equipment. The providers had to think quickly about how to get this patient some 2.5-3 blocks down the road and into the hospital.

Luckily, the fire chief on hand had an inventive idea. He owned a trailer designed to carry motorcycles. After the fire chief got the trailer onto the scene, the two EMS providers with the help of 14 firemen got the woman into the trailer.

The providers continued to administer care in the back of the trailer until they reached the hospital. After the hospital admitted the woman, they diagnosed her with congestive heart failure and pneumonia.

While this is a sad story, it brings about a good question for all EMS. How would you respond to a bariatric call like this one? Or, for that matter, how would you respond to a call for which you had no precedents to draw upon?

If you enjoyed this post, check out the rest of the Distance CME blog!