Sunday, February 28, 2016

My Paramedic Certification

Tomorrow, after 19 years in EMS, 14 of which as a Paramedic, all in the paid sector, with some of the best agencies around, and some of the BEST people in the profession,I am letting my NYS Paramedic certification expire.  I obtained my EMT through the EMT class given at Irvington VAC by Judy Mayer in 1997, EMT-I at Phelps with Barry Nechis in 1999, and my Paramedic cert was obtained at Northeastern University in Boston, MA in 2003 (which at the time was the best Paramedic program in the nation).  I've been certified and credentialed in NY, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Texas, and National Registry over the years. I am currently happy in my current career, but I had hoped to work per-diem as a Paramedic, on the side, just because I enjoy helping people, the challenge, and keeping my skills up. Most recently, I worked a 12 hours shift Sundays at Garrison VAC, as a paid EMT, just for some extra money and to stay relevant in EMS, a job I left because of my cert expiring and my role and dedication at my full time job increasing.

With this, New York state is one of the most difficult states to retain your certification. First off, the NYS DOH website is extremely unclear, murky, and outdated.  Even if you complete CME's and Call Audits, you can't do the pilot refresher if you're not affiliated with an agency that  participates in that. Additionally, the class refreshers I have found don't work with my schedule, and require a lot of time to complete and study. Add on top of that, the need to get REMSCO credentialing for each region you work in, and can't obtain it if you're not affiliated, and all that a REMSCO cert requires on top of everything else, . And to have to pay for a lot of that out of pocket. I'd love to continue working Paramedic per-diem as mentioned above, but it doesn't look like that's going to be possible, right now. I even considered refreshing as an EMT, but even that is a lot. Maybe one day an opportunity will come my way to refresh, but it doesn't look like that will be possible.

For comparison purposes, other states allow Paramedics to be licensed professionals, and not have to prove themselves every 3 years. Some agencies don't do the whole REMAC thing, and the agencies protocols and Paramedic direction are usually set by the EMS Physician at a hospital. Some allow you to plain challenge using a computer testing facility.  And with technology today, I could do all of my CME and Call Audits online.

So, tomorrow is going to be a sad day for me. As I said above, I would have loved to go back to WEMS or Empress per diem,  especially to help them when manpower is stretched thin with everything now, but NYS doesn't want to keep pace with EMS recertification trends, and technology, they just want to lump on more and more requirements and changes in protocols without making any type of progressive change to retain experienced providers or recruit new providers, such as truly accepting NREMT-P reciprocity and utilizing modern technology for continuing ed. With this, I think the coming years will see a Paramedic shortage in the state.

Sorry for my rant. I'm probably repeating myself here. I've had such a great experience working in EMS. I was trained by the best programs with the best instructor. I've worked for great agencies, for and with the greatest people, and have learned so much. Bill Rothschild is my mentor and EMS hero and has done tons for my career, along with so many other people. Empress EMS provided a terrific foundation for my career, something I'll always be appreciative and loyal to that agency for.  Stamford Hospital also molded my BLS career. UMass City Of Worcester EMS (MA), Norwalk Hospital Paramedics (CT), and UMDNJ Newark EMS (NJ) were great places to get experience as a Paramedic. WEMS was a great system and area to work in, with great people, and was very challenging. Scott and White (TX) and Williamson County EMS (TX) were great and interesting places and a different world.  I'm actually pretty devastated over this, but accept it. Hopefully I can return one day.

I've been through a lot personally throughout my EMS career, especially during the past couple years, navigating through divorce, serious illness, and homelessness on the streets of Los Angeles for a couple of months. Thank you to Daryn Baia for giving me a shot to restart my Paramedic cert and for my second time around at Empress when I first returned to NY. RWC130 for helping me get back to NY from LA and start again. A shout out to the barrier door hating, Aerialscope loving great friend and big brother who has given me a chance after being homeless, and the stability and resources to rebuild my life, and have a great job at a great place that allows me a career in emergency services. And my mom for all her support and my Dad for helping me from heaven.



Thursday, March 05, 2015

Slipknot - Wait and Bleed (Sock Puppet Parody)

Socks that are pissed off that they're being used as cleaning rags parodying a metal song. Sounds like something that would be stupid, but it's great! One of the most creative things I've seen in a while. Especially if you're a Slipknot fan.

Monday, March 02, 2015

Hulk Hogan Appreciation Night- WWE Live Road To Wrestlemania Tour At Madison Square Garden

I was proud to be a part of history this past Friday night (2-27-15) when a banner was raised to the rafters at MSG honoring The Immortal Hulk Hogan and 30 years of Hulkamania, with many of the greatest moments over the years taking place at MSG. Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Jimmy Hart, and Triple H were some of the many WWE legends in the house to personally honor him, along with a sold out crowd.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Ardsley Highway Department's New Truck 5

One of the sharpest new trucks around.....
New Delivery
Ardsley, NY Highway Department
Truck 5
2015 Freightliner 108SD 6x6/Henderson Muni Integrated Dump-Spreader Body
Replaced a 1979 Mack RM
More of Ardsley's fleet:

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Friday, December 26, 2014

WWE Live at Madison Square Garden 12-26-14

Awesome show, awesome night at WWE Live at Madison Square Garden. My favorite part was the NXT Championship Match between Sami Zayn and Adrian Neville, which was a surprise on the card. Randy Orton made his return tonight after a couple months off filming a movie. And John Cena and Seth Rollins put on an awesome main event match!

WWE also announced they are returning to MSG February 27th for a house show which will feature Hulk Hogan's return to Madison Square Garden after 20 years.

The card, in order, was:

 Dolph Ziggler (won) vs Luke Harper (Intercontinental Championship Match)
Ryback (won) vs. Curtis Axel
Sami Zayn (won) vs. Adrian Neville (NXT Championship Match)
Jack Swagger (won) vs. Fandango
Miz/Mizdow (won) vs The Usos (Tag Team Championship Match)
Randy Orton (won) vs Kane
NIkki and Brie Bella vs. Alicia Fox and Emma (won) (Paige as the special referee)
Big Show (won) vs. Erick Rowan
John Cena (won) vs Seth Rollins (Streetfight match)