I Spent A Day With EMS

Hello everyone! Today I will be sharing my experience spending a shift with an EMS crew. Keep reading if you are interested!

12 Hours With EMS.png

My summer externship requires us to complete one enhancement day per eight rotations. My June rotation landed me a day with an EMS crew. I was very excited to see my assignment, because EMS is a different world that nurses may not be able to experience. My shift was from 7a-7p and went by relatively fast. So let us jump into my reflections…

EMTs/Paramedics are very fun.

As soon as I waked into headquarters, everyone made me feel welcomed. I enjoyed their quirky, laid-back personalities.

  • EMTs vs. Paramedics

I always knew there was a difference, but I did not know how those roles played out on the field. I will admit I was thoroughly impressed at how much knowledge they all had. They have to cram everything into two years and the Paramedics can obtain their RN if they return to school for two months.

  • Teamwork and organization


The back of that little truck is extremely organized and it is amazing how much effort they put towards working efficiently. The crews I rode with, worked great together.






  • Independence

The independence of the Paramedic role intrigued me. For instance, during the Sepsis call the Paramedic immediately initiated Sepsis protocol. It amazed me that fluids and antibiotics were started, because as a nurse in a clinical setting we have to always wait/ask for an order. Out in the field it isn’t necessary.

  • Modest EMTs

I fan-girled when I saw a couple of the female EMTs/Paramedics wearing skirts.  It really made my heart happy and motivated me. GIRLS IN SKIRTS CAN DO ANYTHING!!

  • Calls for the day

The calls were standard calls: one MVA (no one hurt), lightheaded/dizziness, psych call, sepsis and one “regular” caller who refused to be taken to the hospital. There was one cardiac arrest on another truck, but I wasn’t able to hop on that one because I was on another call.

  • Rocky Ride?

emsdayrideI heard complaints from fellow Externs that the ride in the back of the truck is horrible. I ended up being perfectly fine the entire time, even when we had a thirty minute commute! I actually took a quick nap when we were returning from our refusal. I will say, to takes some skill to drive that truck at a fast speed, not to mention fit into all the back roads…



Overall, I had a blast and I have a better appreciation for our EMS staff. I wish that all nurses/nursing students could have this experience for a day. If you work EMS, THANK YOU!





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