Off duty question

Caspar

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This question came up today during lunch. An EMT is off duty and notices someone in clear anaphylaxis without an epi-pen. If someone else has an epi-pen, can you use it on the patient with anaphylaxis? I know that when on duty, you can call medical control to administer the epinephrine, but if you're off duty, can you give it or just call 911?
 

usalsfyre

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For absolutely clear cut anaphylaxis giving it while conveniently forgetting to identify yourself as an EMS provider is your best bet.
 

J B

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I think it depends on what state you're in. I'm pretty sure that in MA you're covered under good samaritan laws.

And it seems wise to not give out your name or identify yourself as a medical professional.
 

xrsm002

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It depends what state your in. If it is in fact they person's epi pen and you gave them it I'm pretty sure sure you would be covered and pretty sure most jury's would side with you.
 

Medic Tim

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For absolutely clear cut anaphylaxis giving it while conveniently forgetting to identify yourself as an EMS provider is your best bet.

This ^^^


as a layperson you can do this with no questions being asked.

If you identify yourself as an EMT or Medic you risk being reported and getting into trouble.

that said laws vary from state to state.
 

mycrofft

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Epipen is prescription. Answer is NO since dose may be wrong. Also illegal.
 

unleashedfury

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Epipen is prescription. Answer is NO since dose may be wrong. Also illegal.

Its illegal to use another persons Physician prescribed medications. As horrid as that sounds. it opens up liability

Notify 911 and allow the on duty crew to do what they need to do. In the meantime act in the same way a layperson would basic first aid.
 

usalsfyre

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Epipen is prescription. Answer is NO since dose may be wrong. Also illegal.

They come in two doses. The Jr won't be enough for an adult. The Adult might be too much for a kid but it'll probably be ok. It's not rocket surgery.

As for the legality...this is one of the few cases where my personal ethics win out. Those of you who know me know that I'm not by any means one to play the off duty wacker. But there is an incredibly real chance this patient will die without rapid intervention. Deliver the treatment, then fade out...
 

Medic Tim

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They come in two doses. The Jr won't be enough for an adult. The Adult might be too much for a kid but it'll probably be ok. It's not rocket surgery.

As for the legality...this is one of the few cases where my personal ethics win out. Those of you who know me know that I'm not by any means one to play the off duty wacker. But there is an incredibly real chance this patient will die without rapid intervention. Deliver the treatment, then fade out...

Yep. I may or may not have used a couple of my epi pens on a stranger while on vacation in the Dominican, they had a BAD reaction to shellfish and didn't have their dpi pen on them.
 

NomadicMedic

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Funny, my sister used her Rx Epi on a stranger while on a trip in Asia. It was smart thinking and she never thought twice about it. Would I do it here? In a second.
 

Handsome Robb

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Poke em, don't ID yourself (name or "I'm An EmT lOlZ!!!!") and when the crew shows up let them no an Epi pen was administered and go on your merry way.

I agree with the other guys on here, this is one of the very few situations where I would intervene.
 

Tigger

Dodges Pucks
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Do people out there really have to call medical control to give an epi pen? That just seems a bit absurd to me.

Same with aspirin for that matter.
 

Jim37F

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Do people out there really have to call medical control to give an epi pen? That just seems a bit absurd to me.

Same with aspirin for that matter.

Even in LA County I can "Assist patients with the administration of physician prescribed self-administered emergency medications if indications are met and no contraindications are present" with out having to call first. Granted it becomes an automatic ALS transport though.
 

Rialaigh

Forum Asst. Chief
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They come in two doses. The Jr won't be enough for an adult. The Adult might be too much for a kid but it'll probably be ok. It's not rocket surgery.

As for the legality...this is one of the few cases where my personal ethics win out. Those of you who know me know that I'm not by any means one to play the off duty wacker. But there is an incredibly real chance this patient will die without rapid intervention. Deliver the treatment, then fade out...


Words out of my mouth
 

Christopher

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This question came up today during lunch. An EMT is off duty and notices someone in clear anaphylaxis without an epi-pen. If someone else has an epi-pen, can you use it on the patient with anaphylaxis? I know that when on duty, you can call medical control to administer the epinephrine, but if you're off duty, can you give it or just call 911?

In NC you can, but obviously this varies from State to State.
 

Christopher

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In NC you can, but obviously this varies from State to State.

I'll revise my prior statement: 10A NCAC 13P .0509 was revised to restrict its usage by credentialed providers in 2009, which I missed. Previously it was understood that EMS providers could do this as well.

I put epi-pens up there with Aspirin, Albuterol, etc. It is common knowledge to use these in their given situations and thus would not be out of line to "assist with administration" (if you'd like to get weasely about it).

Also, it would be perfectly fine to administer the epi-pen after talking with dispatchers as EMD will direct you to administer them if available.
 

mycrofft

Still crazy but elsewhere
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There's a three-way breaking point...is it legal, will it work, is it needed?
I don't include "Am I willing to take the consequences" because any fool can say "yes". And you need to already have that question settled.
 

medservguru88

Forum Probie
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epi pens have 2 doses 0.3 for adult and 0.15 foe pedi. In the event you come across this do not identify yourself as an emt and apply epi. this will cover you under "good samaritan laws" in your area.
 

Christopher

Forum Deputy Chief
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There's a three-way breaking point...is it legal, will it work, is it needed?
I don't include "Am I willing to take the consequences" because any fool can say "yes". And you need to already have that question settled.

All I ask myself when off duty is if the moral duty is stronger than my legal duty.

To turn this question around:

If I learned a trained individual sat around and did nothing, for say a family member of mine, simply because they were off duty when they knew (a) what to do, (b) how to do it, and (c) had the means to do so, I would be inclined to sue them.

In some States I could have a chance at proving duty, in others I would have no hope. You may unwittingly have a duty in some States if the individual is a minor and you are found to be at least partially "responsible" for them (special relationship is the term I believe, and it applies to other areas).

Paging Wes J.D., paging Wes J.D. ...
 
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