OHS Awareness: Lights & Sirens!
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Spike in attacks on Cairns paramedics halt efforts to attract new recruits

Spike in attacks on Cairns paramedics halt efforts to attract new recruits | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
A SPIKE in attacks on Far Northern paramedics is thwarting efforts to attract young recruits and wreaking havoc on current staff.
Ebony Egyed's insight:
This article is written about one of the stations in my LASN so I found it very interesting considering I can see the graduation light at the end of the tunnel. I wonder what changes the QAS will have adopted regarding abuse of Paramedics, by the time I graduate??
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Electronic safes to thwart drug abuse by paramedics

Electronic safes to thwart drug abuse by paramedics | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Ambulance Victoria is installing high-tech electronic drug safes to prevent the abuse of powerful prescription pain killers by paramedics.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

Could a Paramedics addiction to fentanyl, morphine or ketamine be work related?  PTSD?  Anxiety perhaps?  I surely do hope not.....

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Paramedics, Resident Hospitalized After Inhaling Pesticide

Paramedics, Resident Hospitalized After Inhaling Pesticide | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Two paramedics and a patient have been hospitalized after inhaling a large amount of pesticide at an Anacostia apartment complex.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

HAZCHEM alert!  Part of the windscreen survey is to check for dangers and obvious obstacles but often chemical spills/hazards cannot be seen, and in this case, even smelt.  Unlucky I suppose.  I'm sure the treating crews would not have entered if they new the cause of being called to the scene in the first place.

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EXCLUSIVE: Firefighters, Paramedics Battle More Than Flames During Summer Months - CBS Philly

EXCLUSIVE: Firefighters, Paramedics Battle More Than Flames During Summer Months - CBS Philly | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Surrounded by flames and heavy smoke, firefighters face dangerous odds.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

Goes to show that we as the treating Paramedics can easily fall victim and require treatment ourselves.  Also shows the importance of maintaining great networks with fellow emergency services, supporting each other in more ways than one.  Highlights the need for all emergency service employees to maintain a certain level of fitness as well.  

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Rescuers fear deaths if mobile phone signal not fixed around Cairns

Rescuers fear deaths if mobile phone signal not fixed around Cairns | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
THERE are fears lives will be lost in a treacherous area south of Cairns if mobile phone coverage to the spot is not improved.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

This recent article is all too relevant and demonstrates what we face on road all to often in and around my hometown of Cairns and Innisfail.  Not only are their black spots with mobile phone reception, but also our radios, linking us directly to ReefCom.  Something needs to be done, fast.

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Four hospitalised after Cairns chemical spill

Four hospitalised after Cairns chemical spill | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Ambulance officers have taken four people to hospital following a chemical spill at a waste transfer station in Cairns far north Queensland.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

Hazard alert!  Hazard alert!  HAZCHEM/HAZMAT is a serious WHS issue and I trust all safety precautions were taken prior to the QAS staff entering this scene.

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Matt Golinski may have to appear before ambulance inquiry

Matt Golinski may have to appear before ambulance inquiry | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
IT IS unclear if Matt Golinski will have to appear before a inquiry examining the actions of ambulance crews at the fire that killed his wife and daughters.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

The words 'inquiry', 'allegations', 'investigation', 'botched ambulance response', are never good when the QAS are involved/concerned.  This article left me wondering how the treating ICP/Paramedics must feel knowing they are just 'doing their job' and do not have control over where they are sent and why.  The emotional stress such an investigation must have on these Paramedics is heart breaking, especially as they are most likely also dealing with reactions to being present at such a tragedy.  

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QAS Staff Support Services - Priority One

QAS Staff Support Services - Priority One | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it

Access to QAS Desportal is required however an example of the work Priority One offer can been seen here:  http://www.disasters-psychosocial.org.au/uploads/Paul_Scully.pdf

 

Ebony Egyed's insight:

 This invaluable service provided by the QAS focuses on the safety and well being of all employees at all stages of their career as a Clinician.  Priority One offer counselling, peer support programs, psychological debriefing and many more services to all staff and their immediate families.  It goes to show that the QAS are meeting their obligations to ensure the safety and well being of their staff.

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Amie White's curator insight, September 6, 2015 9:17 AM

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is on an increase among paramedics. PTSD is a mental health condition that is triggered by a person witnessing a horrific event. They could have either experienced it or witnessed this event. The symptoms that an officer may suffer from can include nightmares, anxiety, flashbacks and thoughts of the event.  One way to help officers is the Priority One program that the Queensland Ambulance Service has provided. This program offers officers the chance to recognise if they need further help and will provide them with counselling services, peer support from trained officers and debriefing sessions when officer arrive back on station. The effects of PTSD not only affect the officer but extend to the officers family and friends.

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Are You Under Stress in EMS?

Are You Under Stress in EMS? | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Understanding the slippery slope of burnout
Ebony Egyed's insight:

Crucial, absolutely crucial!  Stress management, the effects of attending a traumatic scene and the impacts such effects have on not only the attending Paramedic, but their loved ones is paramount to avoid burnout in such an industry.  All to often, ignorance or the attitude 'I'm okay' doesn't suffice and creates a whirlwind of dramas and long term conditions for Paramedics.

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Incentive QAS | UK Contract Cleaning | Part of Incentive FM Group - Health and Saftey

Incentive QAS | UK Contract Cleaning | Part of Incentive FM Group - Health and Saftey | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Incentive QAS is a UK contract cleaning company. Incentive QAS has clients in the private and public sector and engage with our customers directly as a standalone professional service provider or as a specialist sub-contractor working under an umbrella facilities management contract.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

I found this site invaluable.  Access to information on a variety of Health and Safety issues relevant to that a Paramedic may face. Needle stick injuries, night worker awareness, noise hazards and lifting techniques are just a few topics covered.

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Paramedic assaulted in central Sydney after attempting to treat a man who was slumped and unresponsive

Paramedic assaulted in central Sydney after attempting to treat a man who was slumped and unresponsive | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
AN attack on a female paramedic allegedly punched to the ground then kicked in the face is another example of
Ebony Egyed's insight:

It just goes to show that despite being called to the scene of a trauma or injury, Paramedics are not always welcome. Those calling 000 may believe they are doing the right thing (and of course they are) but sometimes, people just don't want the help.  Whatever happened to just saying 'No thanks'?

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Leak sparks concern over Victorian paramedics' mental health problems, drug abuse

Leak sparks concern over Victorian paramedics' mental health problems, drug abuse | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
About one in five paramedics has reported suffering from stress, depression or anxiety.

Via ReGenUC
Ebony Egyed's insight:

See scoop before, this is exactly what I was saying!  

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BREAKING: Paramedics vote for strike action - UnionNews

Unite members to take action over two days next month
Ebony Egyed's insight:

12 hour shifts, that's common within the QAS however going 10 hours with out a meal break just isn't on!  It's all too common to see emergency service workers 'eating on the go' but in saying that, it should be avoided where possible.  Regular meal breaks/rest periods are a must (and not always possible) and should be factored into each and every shift, regardless of the length.  It all falls under 'self fatigue-management' and employer obligations.  I'd join the strike!

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Paramedics 'blacklist 200 homes'

Paramedics 'blacklist 200 homes' | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Ebony Egyed's insight:

In our local area, discussions have taken place (privately between crews) regarding certain residences where 'proceed with caution' warnings are in place due to regular domestic disturbances or issues of violence in the past.  However, I have not yet heard of formal 'flags' or 'cautions'.  With our safety being priority, it makes sense for more of these 'flags' to be issued for properties/places/patients with a history of irrational behaviour, especially towards Paramedics. 

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Why lack of sleep is bad for your health

Why lack of sleep is bad for your health | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Find out how lack of sleep can raise your risk of heart disease, diabetes, mental health problems, infertility and more. (It's National Bed Month! Did you know that not getting enough sleep may put you at increased risk of heart disease?
Ebony Egyed's insight:

An interesting thought when managing shift work, family life, social life (what's that?), study - a day in the life of a Paramedic. 

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Preventing Exposures to Bloodborne Pathogens among Paramedics

Ebony Egyed's insight:

The provision of treatment by Paramedics (cannualtion, IM's, etc) increases the risk of infection and exposes the treating crews to diseases, needle stick injuries and contamination.  Paramedics must ensure at all times appropriate measures are taken and PPE is worn correctly.  

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Two police officers injured in Gold Coast attack

Two police officers injured in Gold Coast attack | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
A man accused of stabbing two police officers on Queensland's Gold Coast has been remanded in custody.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

When arriving on scene of a domestic disturbance you are confronted with people displaying aggressive and agitated behaviours, weapons are present, people are bleeding, what do you do? It goes without saying that our safety is paramount, and comes first however, in this day an age, refusing to treat a patient also presents its own set of problems - negligence and breach in duty of care perhaps?  

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WHS Guides and Fact Sheets

WHS Guides and Fact Sheets | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it

Access to QAS Desportal is required however an example of a WHS Fact Sheet can be viewed here:  http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2011-200/pdfs/2011-200.pdf

Ebony Egyed's insight:

(Access to Desportal required).  This is an insight to the information that is provided to all staff of the QAS.  The DESPORTAL site has an endless supply of WHS Guides and Fact Sheets which are easily accessible to staff, volunteers and management.  Together with this, regular mandatory training days and 'refreshers' are offered to all employees, in relation to the expectations QAS have concerning WHS.

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Health and Safety information - Workplace Health and Safety Queensland

Health and Safety information - Workplace Health and Safety Queensland | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Ebony Egyed's insight:

This is alarming.  Why is this still happening? Correct lifting techniques, manual handling training and proper use of available equipment are not only drummed into you at your commencement with the QAS, but are also just common sense.  If you shouldn't lift it, don't.  If you can't lift it, don't.  

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Managing fatigue - Workplace Health and Safety Queensland

Fatigue management is a shared responsibility between management and workers as it involves factors both inside and outside of work. Employers and persons conducting a business or undertaking are responsible for using a risk management approach to manage fatigue.
Ebony Egyed's insight:

Managing fatigue, although regulated by the QAS, falls on the responsibility of the employee.  The Queensland Government have offered a variety of considerations for both the employee and employer in managing a well known negative of shift work in the health industry, fatigue.

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Paramedics call for an end to assaults » The Injured Workers Support Network

Paramedics call for an end to assaults » The Injured Workers Support Network | OHS Awareness:  Lights & Sirens! | Scoop.it
Ebony Egyed's insight:

Most people probably aren't aware that Paramedics are getting assaulted when out on cases.  It is disturbing that one day in the foreseeable future, Police presence may be mandatory at jobs that have been flagged 'unsafe'.

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