Washington State ED Paramedics?

afrench18

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I'm curious if any WA paramedics know why hospitals in WA (or at least in King County) do not hire Paramedics to work in EDs. Is this a Washington DOH thing or Hospital thing? It's been a total buzz kill working as a CNA while my Paramedic skills slowly fade out... I would love to be more proactive in advocating for medics to work in WA EDs, but it's hard when I don't know who exactly is preventing it.
 

NomadicMedic

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Tacoma General and Allenmore used to have full scope paramedics working in the ED. They were called "advanced care patient techs". Is that no longer the case?

I remember hearing the nurses union had some big issues with it...
 

DWR

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The only thing I can think of is pushback from the nurses union. I have allot of RN friends in WA and I know they have talked about the dwindling practice of ER tech's and what they can and cannot due. I'm employed by a larger hospital that has ED Paramedics and allot of the time its hard tell the difference between their scope of practice and an RN's.
 

NomadicMedic

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I did a good chunk of medic school clinical time at Tacoma General and the ED medics had an almost identical scope as the ED RNs, with the exception of administering oral meds. They were accepted as team members and were responsible for patients.

However, at other EDs, medics who worked as techs did nothing more than basic CNA duties.
 

PotatoMedic

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The only thing I can think of is pushback from the nurses union. I have allot of RN friends in WA and I know they have talked about the dwindling practice of ER tech's and what they can and cannot due. I'm employed by a larger hospital that has ED Paramedics and allot of the time its hard tell the difference between their scope of practice and an RN's.
What hospital? You can PM me if you don't want it public.
 

DWR

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St. Joseph's in Bellingham never had ED Paramedics, but over time it looked as though allot of stuff was removed from the ED techs and they were nothing more then a CNA that happened to work in the ED. Now this was my experience taking patients to one hospital for close to 7 years. I know it's way different elsewhere.
 
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afrench18

afrench18

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Tacoma General and Allenmore used to have full scope paramedics working in the ED. They were called "advanced care patient techs". Is that no longer the case?

I remember hearing the nurses union had some big issues with it...
I'm not sure... It could be different from county to county. I have yet to find a medical facility in King County that allows it. Most clinics want MAs with additional MA-P certification. I just hate the idea of spending more money and time going through a course to learn things that I already certified in and have done in a clinical setting through my EMT-P training.
 
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afrench18

afrench18

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St. Joseph's in Bellingham never had ED Paramedics, but over time it looked as though allot of stuff was removed from the ED techs and they were nothing more then a CNA that happened to work in the ED. Now this was my experience taking patients to one hospital for close to 7 years. I know it's way different elsewhere.
That's exactly what happened to me. I worked as a Paramedic in an ED in North Carolina. I moved out here to Washington and couldn't get a job on a rig without going through UW's program which would have been like going through the Paramedic program all over again. I went to a 3 week CNA program, and work at a small ED now, but my scope of practice is maybe 20% of what I was allowed to do in NC. I started a job as a HUC at another large hospital (couldn't get hired as a tech because I don't have a MA-P cert) and every single day I get multiple texts asking for "ED techs" to come in and work. It's a sad state of affairs and these hospitals would probably benefit greatly if medics could work in their EDs. I guess the nursing union would be a good place to start asking who or what is preventing this.
 

DWR

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To be honest... I'd forgo the nursing union and move on. The fact of the matter is Washington doesn't utilize medics in the ER setting the way other states do. I'm sure you could state your case until you are blue in the face but I don't think you'll get very far unfortunately. My suggestion is if you are looking at staying in state look outside King County which has very large, strong unions (also as was stated above). Possibly look into RN school or Anesthesia Tech if you want to stay in King County.
 

Carlos Danger

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Anyone here would tell a RN who wanted to work on an ambulance doing 911, "go to paramedic school".

So if you want to work in an ED, why not go to nursing school? Then you can work anywhere, rather than having to worry about which hospitals allow their ED techs to do more stuff.
 

Inspir

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More less a union battle. We want to work in a hospital setting and the nurses union freaks out. Nurses want to work on the ambulance or helicopters and our union freaks out.
 

TransportJockey

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Anyone here would tell a RN who wanted to work on an ambulance doing 911, "go to paramedic school".

So if you want to work in an ED, why not go to nursing school? Then you can work anywhere, rather than having to worry about which hospitals allow their ED techs to do more stuff.
There are some places that hire paramedics as paramedics, not techs. When I worked at UNMH I had my own patient load, passed meds, did assessments, charted, and did whatever skills they needed. A paramedic functions as a fast track type provider rather well. But our nursing staff and our medics respected each other and it wasn't the pissing match that it seems a lot of places have to deal with.
 

Carlos Danger

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There are some places that hire paramedics as paramedics, not techs. When I worked at UNMH I had my own patient load, passed meds, did assessments, charted, and did whatever skills they needed. A paramedic functions as a fast track type provider rather well. But our nursing staff and our medics respected each other and it wasn't the pissing match that it seems a lot of places have to deal with.

I know that a small percentages of ED's do this, but my point was that if one wanted to make a career of working in the ED, they would have far more options as an RN than as a paramedic.

As far as the pissing matches go in these situations, to a significant degree I think it is understandable and reasonable for nurses to not like seeing nursing openings go to non-nurses. I'm sure things get ugly in some cases and I certainly don't condone people acting that way, but until paramedics have no problem at all with RN's walking into paramedic positions, they should also understand why RN's don't like seeing the same thing happen on their turf.
 

Tigger

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I know that a small percentages of ED's do this, but my point was that if one wanted to make a career of working in the ED, they would have far more options as an RN than as a paramedic.

As far as the pissing matches go in these situations, to a significant degree I think it is understandable and reasonable for nurses to not like seeing nursing openings go to non-nurses. I'm sure things get ugly in some cases and I certainly don't condone people acting that way, but until paramedics have no problem at all with RN's walking into paramedic positions, they should also understand why RN's don't like seeing the same thing happen on their turf.
At least here the ED Paramedics are hired to replace regular techs and not nurses. The plan is to provide additional staffing in the fast track units and also have someone available to initially manage codes and things like that until a doc can be freed up.
 
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