Meaningful Connections

Being an EMT is more than just transporting patients. Creating meaningful connections with patients can go a long way.

I have met many patients during one of their most difficult times. They may be hungry in preparation for surgery or concerned that eating will make their pain worsen. Many parents are unable to eat because they were too anxious and worried about their sick child. Some are able to recuperate and are eager to return home to see their loved ones. Others were ecstatic to finally shower and straighten out their bed hair.

Not every patient can have family members visit them. Some are isolated and visitors are not permitted; others may have family members but they are away; and still others do not have any at all. In many cases, EMTs visit patients more frequently than family members.

I was able to work with a paramedic for a shift. Unlike previous partners, he prioritized connecting with the patient and the patient’s family members. Speaking with patients can teach you a thing or two. You get to learn more about their medical history, how they felt, and how their day went directly from them, which gives you the opportunity to build trust with patients and their family members. Giving patients the assurance that you are available to assist them in times of need is an important aspect of being an EMT.

I realized how critical it was to build meaningful relationships with patients. If you have the opportunity to meet patients or be an EMT, do not pass up the opportunity to get to know the patient, as comfort can mean a lot during their difficult times. Meaningful connections, no matter how brief, can go a long way.

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